Fall abundance has finally arrived! Unfortunately our workers have not. This week we’re watching acres and acres of hibiscus, sweet potatoes, peas, and turnips ripen in the field but who will pick them all? For seven years we’ve been trying to hire Americans to help us in our fields. Our current starting rate for professional picking is $11.29/hr and this includes your rent and lots of food from the farm. This season we have posted ads in four different states and have had 0 applicants. This country of imperialists forces us to look elsewhere for our labor force required to bring you all the great veggies every week. We participate in the H-2A visa program, a process the requires approval from the County government, State Government, US Department of Labor, and USCIS. The last of these departments appears to be the most underfunded and is allowed 60 days to turn around requests for information. All other departments have approved our application but USCIS has held up all our applicants due to the paperwork of only two of the applicants. We may have to wait months to resolve the issue when all other departments have granted our request of 10/1/18 start date for our workers.
We’re now two weeks into our production season without the labor we need to continue to produce the food you all depend on. We hope you all that read this are outraged at our malfunctioning system of immigration and the hateful messages promoted by the current pseudo government. We feel the delay we’re experiencing is a direct result of under-funding the most critical government offices that the entire country relies upon for domestic crop production (most established specialty crop growers are now using H-2A labor). If you all want to take action on this please support government officials with an intelligent plan regarding guest workers and immigration in general. No immigration or less immigration from non-European countries is not the answer. Buying all our produce from Mexico and the rest of the developing world is not the answer. Please speak up now before this situation gets even worse.
Regardless of the challenges we face, we will do our absolute best to provide you all the best quality and best tasting produce in the State of Florida. This week we will be inviting members of our community to plant over 30,000 strawberry plants in our field. We look forward to harvesting the amazing fruit in the spring. -Farmer John
Abundant Crops (if we can pick them):
Mississippi Purple Hull Peas