Fearing a worker shortage, farmers push back on immigration

By , on April 24, 2017


Farm employers are worried about losing their workforces. (Photo: United Soybean Board/ Flickr)
Farm employers are worried about losing their workforces. (Photo: United Soybean Board/ Flickr)

UNCTION CITY –President Donald Trump’s hard line against immigrants in the U.S. illegally has sent a chill through the nation’s agricultural industry, which fears a crackdown will deprive it of the labour it needs to plant, grow and pick the crops that feed the country.

Fruit and vegetable growers, dairy and cattle farmers and owners of plant nurseries and vineyards have begun lobbying politicians at home and in Washington to get them to deal with immigration in a way that minimizes the harm to their livelihoods.

Field hands have been among those targeted by immigration agents, with apple pickers detained in upstate New York and Guatemalans pulled over in Oregon on their way to a forest to pick a plant used in floral arrangements.

Farm employers are worried about losing their workforces.