California Farms Face Labor Shortage As Farmworkers Age

SELMA — California’s $44 billion agricultural industry faces a worsening labor shortage as farmworkers age, more return home to Mexico and fewer new migrants arrive to replace them.
The state’s farming workforce is aging and shrinking for several reasons, including stricter immigration enforcement, an improving economy in Mexico and the lack of interest in field work among the children of farmworkers, according to the Sacramento Bee (http://bit.ly/ZC3Q0j ).
“Basically, we’re running out of low-skilled workers,” said J. Edward Taylor, a University of California, Davis, economist who has studied the migration of farmworkers from Mexico. “The second generation doesn’t do farm work. That’s why we’ve relied on a steady influx of newcomers. And the newcomers are in dwindling supply.”

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