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From The Guardian:

Lack of migrant workers left food rotting in UK fields last year, data reveals

Exclusive: Brexit fears and falling pound left fruit and vegetable farms short of more than 4,000 workers, with senior MPs warning of a crisis

Damian Carrington Environment editor

Fri 9 Feb 2018 09.46 EST Last modified on Fri 9 Feb 2018 14.11 EST

Mouldy strawberries

Fruit and vegetable farms across the UK were left short of thousands of migrant workers in 2017, leaving some produce to rot in the fields and farmers suffering big losses.

In case you are interested, I explained the mechanics of how growers’ PR firms plant these kinds of perennial scare stories in the gullible press back in 2006 in VDARE.

• Tags: Crops 
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From the Los Angeles Times:

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

Feb. 9, 2017
Natalie Kitroeff

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.

Amazing. In all my years of reading about the latest crops-rotting-in-the-fields crisis, I’d always been under the impression that the Law of Supply and Demand had been repealed for California growers. And now this hereditary landowner has had a breakthrough insight denied virtually all economists asked to comment on the labor economics of immigration. Mr. Christopher ought to be the frontrunner for next fall’s quasi-Nobel in Economics.

Seriously, Gilroy is in the southern end of Santa Clara County, home to Silicon Valley, so housing costs are extremely high. I would imagine stoop laborers in Santa Clara County either commute in from far-away or sleep in bunk beds in something barracks-like.

Presumably, the grower will eventually sell his land to a housing subdeveloper for a huge amount of money (potentially in the billions if they can get over $200,000 per acre for their 5,000 acres), but in the meantime it’s nice to make a profit off farming too.

• Tags: Crops 
Steve Sailer
About Steve Sailer

Steve Sailer is a journalist, movie critic for Taki's Magazine, columnist, and founder of the Human Biodiversity discussion group for top scientists and public intellectuals.

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