Tackling the Workforce Hurdles: “It’s really truly a labor issue more than it is an immigration issue”

Adding even more pressure to the economy is the workforce.
It is one of the biggest concerns this year for farmers.

Lawmakers are tackling the topic with the newly formed Ag Labor Working Group. Congressman David Rouzer of North Carolina says that in recent Farm Bill listening sessions, labor is the number one or two issue.
He says that it gets wrapped up into immigration easily and he hopes they can find a bipartisan solution.

According to Rep. Rouzer, “It’s really a worker issue, it’s really truly a labor issue more than it is an immigration issue, but these workers that are needed, you know, would have to come from other countries, south of the border in particular, historically, has been the case that’s created a nexus with immigration and makes any kind of change in law very difficult... and when you have an issue that has those two characteristics, it just makes the politics of it very, very difficult to thread the needle on and get across the finish line. So, this is an effort by the Ag Committee, by GT personally, who wants to have proposals come from House Democrats and House Republicans on the Ag Committee that truly represent proposals from production agriculture.”

The push for workforce and immigration to find a bipartisan solution is heating up as the Farm Bill deadline gets closer.