Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 23
Like Tree22Likes

Thread: How this garlic farm went from a labor shortage to over 150 people on its applicant w

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

  1. #1
    Super Moderator GeorgiaPeach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    21,295

    How this garlic farm went from a labor shortage to over 150 people on its applicant w

    How this garlic farm went from a labor shortage to over 150 people on its applicant waitlist





    By NATALIE KITROEFF
    FEB 09, 2017 | 6:00 AM




    Ken Christopher, vice president at Christopher Ranch, had been failing to draw new workers since 2014. (Feb. 9, 2017)




    The biggest fresh garlic producer in the nation is giving its employees a hefty raise, reflecting the desperation of farmers to attract a dwindling number of farmworkers.


    Christopher Ranch, which grows garlic on 5,000 acres in Gilroy, Calif., announced recently that it would hike pay for farmworkers from $11 an hour to $13 hour this year, or 18%, and then to $15 in 2018. That's four years earlier than what's required by California's schedule for minimum wage increases.




    Ken Christopher, vice president at Christopher Ranch, said the effect of the move was immediately obvious. At the end of last year, the farm was short 50 workers needed to help peel, package and roast garlic. Within two weeks of upping wages in January, applications flooded in. Now the company has a wait-list 150 people long.


    "I knew it would help a little bit, but I had no idea that it would solve our labor problem," Christopher said.



    He said the farm has been trying, without success, to draw new workers since 2014. Human resources frantically advertised open farm-labor positions, posting help-wanted ads online and urging employees to ply their networks for potential recruits. Nothing came of it.




    Farmers across the country have reported that they, too, are struggling to find farmhands. The dearth of ag labor seems to have reached a tipping point when the Obama administration stepped up border enforcement and deported millions of undocumented workers.


    Perhaps partly because of the crackdown, plus the financial crisis of 2008, more Mexicans returned home than migrated to the United States from 2009 to 2014, for the first time in decades, according to the Pew Research Center.


    A stronger, more dynamic Mexican economy also seems to be prompting a turn away from careers in agriculture. The total supply of farm laborers in Mexico, for which growers in the U.S. compete, declined by 150,000 workers every year between 1980 and 2010, according to a study last year by Diane Charlton and Edward Taylor, researchers at Montana State University and UC Davis.





    "Kids aren't growing up in rural Mexico to be farmworkers the way they once were," said Taylor. "Mexico has been successful at building rural schools and providing kids in villages with access to education."


    The shortage of workers is one reason farms have cut back production of fruits and vegetables by 9.5%, costing growers $3.1 billion in lost revenue, according to a 2015 report by the Partnership for a New American Economy, a nonprofit that promotes immigration reform.


    "It's continuing to become more acute as fewer new workers come into the country to do agricultural work, and experienced workers here are aging out of the industry," said Jason Resnick, vice president and general counsel for the Western Growers' Assn. trade group.


    The scarcity has prompted employers to give farmworkers a raise.





    Between 2010 and 2016, weekly wages for those in crop production went up by 28% in California, compared with a 20% rise in average state wages overall, according to the Employment Development Department. Farmwork pays about $32,500 annually on average in California, the most recent data show. The pay data can include management and desk workers.


    Agricultural workers have long been entitled to a minimum wage. Lawsuits over paying for breaks, training and other nonproductive time were largely resolved in 2015 when Gov. Brown signed legislation offering growers a way to settle back-wage disputes and avoid prosecutions. That law, however, is under review by a federal court.


    The governor last year also signed legislation changing the threshold for overtime for farmworkers, who now can receive such pay after eight hours of work or more than 40 hours a week. Previous law set the bar at 10 hours per day and 60 hours per week.


    Farm wages have risen more gradually in other parts of the U.S., still far outpacing the rise in pay for all sectors.




    Throwing money at the problem hasn't solved anything yet, because it isn't drawing in workers from other industries.


    "The one constant is that no matter how much we pay, domestic workers are not applying for these jobs," Resnick said. "Raising wages only serves to cannibalize from the existing workforce; it does nothing to add new laborers to the pool."


    The question is whether Christopher Ranch's approach of offering bigger raises can be replicated elsewhere.


    Christopher Ranch is a huge operation — employing around 600 workers who touch garlic and other food products every day — and so it may be better positioned to withstand a wage hike than smaller operators.


    Garlic also requires a lot of human labor to harvest, package and roast, so the farm has an incentive to keep its workforce intact.


    The company is at a disadvantage because it is nestled in the southern tip of Santa Clara County, home of Silicon Valley. The mushrooming tech sector has driven up average pay – and the cost of living – for locals across many sectors.


    On average, people in Santa Clara County earned $121,212 last year, up 41% from $85,800 in 2010, according to the Employment Development Department. That means Christopher Ranch has to make its jobs attractive enough to draw in workers who may live far away.


    When the farm raised its lowest wages from $10 to $11 last summer, no new workers streamed in, says Christopher, the vice president. He reasons that the extra $1 wasn't enough to tempt people to drive in from cheaper nearby areas, such as San Benito, Monterey and Merced counties, where one-bedroom apartments can be had for less than the $2,500-a-month average in Santa Clara County.


    News of the eventual raise to $15, which workers learned about when they got their first checks in mid-January, spread quickly, though.


    "Moving to $13 became really attractive and made it worth it for people to carpool into these jobs," Christopher said.


    He's now getting applications from workers willing to commute nearly two hours to and from the farm.


    "I see this as an example of enlightened management, that realizes agriculture needs to adjust to a new world in which there will be fewer farmworkers than before," said Taylor, the UC Davis researcher.






    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-f...207-story.html


    Last edited by GeorgiaPeach; 09-03-2018 at 04:20 PM.
    MW, Judy, Newmexican and 2 others like this.
    Matthew 19:26
    But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.
    ____________________

    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)


  2. #2
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    55,883


    Jobs Americans Will Do: Any Job at a Fair Wage.
    Last edited by Judy; 12-24-2018 at 12:28 AM.
    A Nation Without Borders Is Not A Nation - Ronald Reagan
    Save America, Deport Congress! - Judy

    Support our FIGHT AGAINST illegal immigration & Amnesty by joining our E-mail Alerts at https://eepurl.com/cktGTn

  3. #3
    Super Moderator GeorgiaPeach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    21,295
    Related:

    Trump Administration Immigration Policies Could Hamper Some Ag Sectors

    https://www.alipac.us/f12/trump-admi...ectors-362259/
    Judy likes this.
    Matthew 19:26
    But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.
    ____________________

    Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)


  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    San Bernardino, CA
    Posts
    1,810
    Christopher Ranch, which grows garlic on 5,000 acres in Gilroy, Calif., announced recently that it would hike pay for farmworkers from $11 an hour to $13 hour this year, or 18%, and then to $15 in 2018.
    The bottom line is can they maintain profit? Something has to pay for that increase. If competitive garlic producers are getting that same labor for $3 to $5 less per hour, they can sell the same product for less. If all garlic producers raise wages the same, the price must go up. If all get on board this will be a win for American jobs, although inflation for Americans. Time will tell what gives.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2018
    Posts
    289
    Quote Originally Posted by jtdc View Post
    The bottom line is can they maintain profit? Something has to pay for that increase. If competitive garlic producers are getting that same labor for $3 to $5 less per hour, they can sell the same product for less. If all garlic producers raise wages the same, the price must go up. If all get on board this will be a win for American jobs, although inflation for Americans. Time will tell what gives.
    The cost of picking produce is a very small part of the cost of the produce. I don't know about garlic but consider oranges. If you pick one orange every 12 seconds that is 300 per hour. If you give the workers a $3 raise that is a penny added per orange.
    MW, southBronx, Beezer and 2 others like this.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    55,883
    Quote Originally Posted by Text Driving Is Deadly View Post
    The cost of picking produce is a very small part of the cost of the produce. I don't know about garlic but consider oranges. If you pick one orange every 12 seconds that is 300 per hour. If you give the workers a $3 raise that is a penny added per orange.
    EXACTLY!! And Trump and Republicans more than compensated you for that with the reduction in the corporate tax rate!! So raise the wages, hire good American Workers who wash their hands, sell better oranges and other products, and become GREAT again. We don't want low ball, low rent, low quality stuff, we want high ball, high rent, high wage, high quality stuff. THAT's what "Made in the USA" used to mean and should mean again. MAKE IT HAPPEN!! HIRE AMERICAN!! BUY AMERICAN!!!

    southBronx and jtdc like this.
    A Nation Without Borders Is Not A Nation - Ronald Reagan
    Save America, Deport Congress! - Judy

    Support our FIGHT AGAINST illegal immigration & Amnesty by joining our E-mail Alerts at https://eepurl.com/cktGTn

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    San Bernardino, CA
    Posts
    1,810
    Quote Originally Posted by Text Driving Is Deadly View Post
    The cost of picking produce is a very small part of the cost of the produce. I don't know about garlic but consider oranges. If you pick one orange every 12 seconds that is 300 per hour. If you give the workers a $3 raise that is a penny added per orange.
    Then they should be eager to pay $25 per hour since it doesn't affect the bottom line. You apparently didn't read the part: "Garlic also requires a lot of human labor to harvest, package and roast, so the farm has an incentive to keep its workforce intact."
    Last edited by jtdc; 09-04-2018 at 12:15 AM.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    55,883
    Quote Originally Posted by jtdc View Post
    Then they should be eager to pay $25 per hour since it doesn't affect the bottom line. You apparently didn't read the part: "Garlic also requires a lot of human labor to harvest, package and roast, so the farm has an incentive to keep its workforce intact."
    They're hiring new people with a waiting list of 150 by raising the wage $2, so why would they raise it another $10? You're acting goofy.

    Last edited by Judy; 09-04-2018 at 03:05 PM.
    A Nation Without Borders Is Not A Nation - Ronald Reagan
    Save America, Deport Congress! - Judy

    Support our FIGHT AGAINST illegal immigration & Amnesty by joining our E-mail Alerts at https://eepurl.com/cktGTn

  9. #9
    Moderator Beezer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Posts
    25,139
    Pay better wages. Gets them off welfare and making a paycheck...paying taxes and spending their money in OUR country!

    We lose billions by these traitors hiring illegal aliens!

    These Farmers and THEIR cheap labor cost us a fortune that THEY do not bear the cost of!


    $133 BILLION A YEAR THEY COST US PLUS $50 BILLION SENT BACK OVER THE BORDER AND SPENT IN THIER COUNTRY, NOT OURS!

    MANDATORY E-VERIFY JOBS, HOUSING, WELFARE, FOOD STAMPS, BANK ACCOUNTS, HEALTHCARE, VOTING, DRIVERS LICENSE!

    GET THEM TO SELF DEPORT AND KEEP THEM OFF OUR SOIL.
    Judy likes this.
    TO BECOME AN AMERICAN YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR VALUES ...NOT YOUR LOCATION

    STAY HOME AND BUILD AMERICA ON YOUR SOIL

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    Location
    San Bernardino, CA
    Posts
    1,810
    Quote Originally Posted by Judy View Post
    They hiring new people with a waiting list of 150 by raising the wage $2, so why would they raise it another $10? You're acting goofy.

    The goofyness is you citing the $2 raise, when it was in addition to the other $3. This is a total of $5. The previous $3 had no effect.

    And also goofy is the claim that those raises are insignificant to the price of the product. My "goofy" point was, if it is so insignificant, why not be generous and pay a lot more. There should be no opposition to raising all minimum wages to at least $15. But as has been shown in places like Washington State and businesses like Starbuck's, the dream doesn't work in the real world. That is why so many business have been using illegal aliens, because it helps them keep the price of the products down so they can remain competitive.

    I cheer Christopher Ranch for its effort. But it is a gamble, that if competitors don't follow suit, could put them out of business. Either all the available workers will flock to their ranch, leaving competitors raising their own wages to attract workers back to their farms, or Christopher Farms will go broke because of too high operating costs. The big difficulty is if it doesn't work, it is almost impossible to take the wages back down.
    Last edited by jtdc; 09-04-2018 at 03:06 PM.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Fewer workers cross border, creating US farm labor shortage
    By Rhah in forum illegal immigration News Stories & Reports
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-08-2012, 03:21 PM
  2. Colorado Farm Labor Shortage?
    By zeezil in forum illegal immigration News Stories & Reports
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 03-23-2008, 03:59 PM
  3. No Widespread Shortage of Farm Labor
    By CitizenJustice in forum illegal immigration News Stories & Reports
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-12-2007, 04:45 PM
  4. Farm Worker Shortage? Not !
    By Populist in forum illegal immigration News Stories & Reports
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-31-2007, 04:02 PM
  5. Farm labor shortage approaches critical level
    By Brian503a in forum illegal immigration News Stories & Reports
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-14-2005, 02:13 AM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •