AFBF video highlights farm labor shortages due to visa delays

AFBF wants Congress to address the problems with the H-2A program. | File photo

The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) produced a video at the end of June highlighting the frustrations of American farmers dealing with labor shortages in the important harvesting season. 

Robert Dickey, a Georgia peach farmer whose farm is highlighted in the video, is one of many farmers who rely on the H-2A program. The program, which gives foreign nationals work visas so they can be hired by U.S. farmers during harvest season, has been affected by administrative delays meaning the workers arrive to farms days and sometimes weeks after peak harvest season, costing farmers’ time and money.

"This is a serious issue for farmers across America," AFBF President Zippy Duvall said. "If you have a crop that's ready and your harvest window is narrow and your workers show up late -- you're going to lose your crop. We're going to have to make a choice. We either have to import our labor -- workers to harvest our crops -- or we'll have to import our food."

AFBF wants Congress to address the problems with the H-2A program and develop a program that is more streamlined as well as responsible immigration reform so farmers can legally hire foreign nationals.

Organizations in this story

American Farm Bureau Federation 600 Maryland Ave SW Suite 1000 Washington, DC 20024

Get notified the next time we write about American Farm Bureau Federation!