The Packer’s National Editor Tom Karst on Nov. 21 chatted with Dan Fazio, director of the Washington Farm Labor Association, Lacey, Wash. Fazio helps manage H-2A programs for growers in Washington state. Read the entire chat on the Fresh Talk blog.
1 p.m. Tom Karst: How did the last couple of weeks of apple harvest go in Washington state? Were growers able to find enough workers to finish the harvest?
Fazio1:01 p.m. Dan Fazio: There was (some) fruit left on the trees. We will have the result of (the harvest) pretty shortly. (Washington state) surveys about 900 growers every month and they ask them if they have enough workers. We had a 5% shortage in August. It spiked to a 8.9% shortage in September. The shortage was 6.7% in October. The governor declared an emergency because there weren’t enough pickers and so they actually offered prison labor.