“With a reworked guest worker program, and by allowing skilled laborers to earn an adjustment of status, food prices remain stable and there are only marginal impacts on production,” Stallman said in the release. “It’s clear that we need greater enforcement, but those two key reforms must be included in the process.”
Stallman said most Americans won’t do farm work, even on a temporary basis.
“The bottom line of this study is that we either import our labor or we import our food.”
Craig Regelbrugge, co-chairman of the Agriculture Coalition for Immigration Reform and vice president for government relations for the American Nursery & Landscape Association, said Feb. 10 the Farm Bureau study appears to reinforce previous regional research looking at the effect on agricultural with an enforcement-only approach.
“All these different studies look are looking at the cost and harm of enforcement only, and that is kind of where we are headed until Congress finds the will to do something,” he said.
Regelbrugge said Republicans in the House appear to agree on the need to act on immigration reform, but 2014 is an election year and may stall the process.