Douglas Fruit Holds Pasco Mass Vaccination Event

As efforts continue in farm country to protect Ag workers from COVID-19, Douglas Fruit held a mass vaccination event Friday at their Pasco area warehouse. Lindsey Peonio said the one day event was open for all Douglas Fruit and Douglas Ag Services employees. She noted the want to provide a safe environment for their workers, […]

Galen Encouraged That Senate Is Looking At Farm Workforce Modernization Act

The Farm Workforce Modernization Act recently passed recently by the House of Representatives would give dairy farmers much needed greater access to foreign labor. The National Milk Producers Federation’s Chris Galen said House passage of the bill provides momentum towards addressing dairy’s labor needs. “Last week, the House of Representatives took a very important step […]

Farm Workforce Modernization Act Reintroduced

On Wednesday Central Washington’s Dan Newhouse and California’s Zoe Lofgren reintroduced the Farm Workforce Modernization Act. The lawmakers says the bipartisan bill, which passed the House during last year’s Congress, aims to ensure a legal, reliable workforce for America’s farmers and ranchers. Among other provisions, it would amend the H-2A program to allow a capped number […]

AFBF Out With 2021 Policy Objectives

Setting Farm Bureau’s focus for 2021, Key topics ranged from farm diversity to farm labor and dairy policy to livestock marketing. Sam Kieffer, AFBF Vice President of Public Affairs, said Farm Bureau delegates voted to increase racial diversity in agriculture. “Recognizing the importance of broadening access to agriculture, our delegates voted to increase racial diversity […]

Farmworker Advocates File Suit Over H-2A Pay Freeze

Farmworker groups filed a lawsuit accusing the Trump administration of trying to suppress worker wages. Their suit asks a federal judge to set aside a Labor Department rule that could cut agricultural guest worker wages by up to $170 million over the next ten years. A Successful Farming article says the Labor Department rule goes […]

AFBF: H-2A Rule Provides Farmers The Predictability They Need

According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, the recent H-2A adverse effect wage rate final rule, which changes the index farm wages are based upon, will help provide producers predictability in labor costs. AFBF Congressional Relations Director Allison Crittenden said this data proves farmers will have more predictability and stability when it comes to their […]

Labor Department Finalizes H-2A Wage Rule

On Monday, the Labor Department issued a final rule that updates the methodology for determining the annual Adverse Effect Wage Rates in the H-2A visa program. The Trump administration claims the new rule improves the consistency of the wage rates, provides stronger protections for workers, and establishes better stability and predictability for employers. Agriculture Secretary […]

United Farm Workers Files Lawsuit over USDA Suspending Labor Report

Last week, United Farm Workers filed a lawsuit against the Trump administration for suspending a farm labor survey. Last month, the USDA announced the intention to suspend the Agricultural Labor Survey. The Department of Ag claims the public can access other data sources for the data collected in the survey. The Agricultural Labor Survey provides […]

H-2A Positions Increase Fivefold Since 2005

According to the USDA, the number of H-2A workers increased fivefold between 2005 and 2019. Calling the data an indicator of the scarcity of farm labor, USDA’s Economic Research Service says the number of H-2A positions requested and approved increased from just over 48,000 in 2005 to nearly 258,000 in 2019. The H-2A Temporary Agricultural […]

AFBF: We Want To See More From Farm Workforce Modernization Act

The Farm Workforce Modernization Act makes several needed changes to farm labor provisions, but according to the American Farm Bureau Federation, comes up short of delivering what farmers need.   “Farmers need a wage methodology out of labor reform that allows them to compete against imports coming in from Central and South America where growers […]