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 Table of Contents
 Introduction
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 Labor market results
 Possible employer actions to deal...
 Appendix A: The questionnaire














Group Title: Economic information report ;
Title: Farm labor in the fruit and nut industries of Florida
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00026510/00001
 Material Information
Title: Farm labor in the fruit and nut industries of Florida
Series Title: Economic information report ;
Physical Description: vi, 23 p. : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Polopolus, Leo
Chunkasut, Noy
Moon, Sharon
University of Florida -- Food and Resource Economics Dept
Publisher: Food & Resource Economics Dept., Agricultural Experiment Stations, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Food & Resource Economics Dept., Agricultural Experiment Stations, Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, (Fla)
Publication Date: 1989
Copyright Date: 1989
 Subjects
Subject: Agricultural laborers -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Fruit industry -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Nut industry -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: Leo C. Polopolus, Sharon Moon, and Noy Chunkasut.
General Note: "October 1989."
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00026510
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: notis - AGZ0256
alephbibnum - 001478326
oclc - 20974873

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Table of Contents
    Historical note
        Note
    Title Page
        Page i
        Page ii
    Abstract
        Page iii
        Page iv
    Preface
        Page v
    Table of Contents
        Page vi
    Introduction
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Characteristics of responding employers
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
    Labor market results
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
    Possible employer actions to deal with labor supply problems
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
    Appendix A: The questionnaire
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
Full Text





HISTORIC NOTE



The publications in this collection do
not reflect current scientific knowledge
or recommendations. These texts
represent the historic publishing
record of the Institute for Food and
Agricultural Sciences and should be
used only to trace the historic work of
the Institute and its staff. Current IFAS
research may be found on the
Electronic Data Information Source
(EDIS)

site maintained by the Florida
Cooperative Extension Service.






Copyright 2005, Board of Trustees, University
of Florida





Leo C. Polopolus Economic Information
Sharon Moon Report 263
Noy Chunkasut






Farm Labor in the Fruit and Nut
Industries of Florida
















Cenirai Scieilce
Library
JAN 11 1990
University of Florida


Food & Resource Economics Department
Agricultural Experiment Stations and
Cooperative Extension Service
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences October 1989
University of Florida, Gainesville 32611














FARM LABOR IN THE FRUIT AND NUT INDUSTRIES

OF FLORIDA

















Leo C. Polopolus, Sharon Moon, and Noy Chunkasut















Leo C. Polopolus is Professor, Sharon Moon is Assistant in, and Noy Chunkasut is
Visiting Assistant in, all in the Department of Food and Resource Economics, Institute
of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611.

ii








ABSTRACT

This report presents that portion of a broader study of horticultural industries in
Florida dealing with fruit and nut industries. The focus of the inquiry is upon wage rates
paid to seasonal workers, prospective labor supplies, likely impact of the Immigration
Reform and Control Act upon the supply of seasonal workers, possible employer
actions to deal with inadequate labor supplies, and the ethnic and other demographic
characteristics of seasonal field workers in Florida's fruit and nut industries.
The survey design involved questionnaires mailed to approximately 1,400 Florida
farmers during the late Spring and Summer of 1988. The overall response rate was 474
questionnaires or 34%. Of the total number of respondents, 152 were from fruit and nut
growers or 32% of the total of 474. Less than one-half of the respondents, however,
fully completed the questionnaire. Practically all respondents were located in Central
and South Florida.
Horticultural growers, particularly citrus growers, utilize a variety of methods for
meeting their harvesting and other seasonal labor requirements. For fruit and nut
respondents as a whole, 42% hired their seasonal workers directly, while 36% utilized
both direct hiring practices and outside farm labor services. The remaining 22% of fruit
and nut respondents hired seasonal labor only through labor contractors. There is
considerable difference in the patterns of labor recruitment for oranges and grapefruit
when compared with strawberries.
Hispanic workers comprise the largest ethnic grouping of seasonal farm workers
in the Florida fruit and nut industry with slightly over 60% of the total. Roughly 20% of
seasonal workers in fruits and nuts are American Blacks, plus an additional 10% Haitian
and other foreign Blacks. Non-Hispanic domestic Caucasians represent less than 6%
of the total seasonal workforce.
Almost 80% of the seasonal farm workers on fruit and nut farms in Florida are
men, with 20.5% women. This same pattern holds for seasonal orange and grapefruit
workers, but 31.4% of seasonal strawberry workers are women.
Hourly wage rates were estimated for several types of job skills. There was a
sharp difference between the average hourly wage rate for planting versus the wage
rate for harvesting/picking, particularly for oranges and grapefruit. In the 1987-88
season, the average hourly wage rate for planting orange trees was $3.87 compared
with $5.74 for harvesting oranges, or a difference of $1.87 per hour. The difference
between planting and harvesting wage rates for strawberries, however, was less than
$1 per hour for the 1987-88 season.
Average hourly rates for weeding and hoeing fruit and nut crops are slightly
below those of planting. There was only a minor increase in average wage rates for
both planting and harvesting hand skills in fruit and nut industries between the 1986-
87 and 1987-88 seasons.


iii









Seasonal tractor drivers received an average wage rate of $4.27 per hour in both
the orange and grapefruit industries, with an hourly rate of $4.36 for tractor drivers in
the strawberry industry. Permanent or year around tractor drivers and other machine
workers received hourly wage rates above those received for seasonal workers
performing similar tasks.

Most responding employers in Florida's fruit and nut industries felt that the supply
of seasonal field workers in the peak week had been adequate in the past two seasons
and is likely to be adequate for the 1988-89 season. However, the number and percent
of employers expressing concern about inadequacy of labor supplies has risen
consistently over the past three seasons.

For the orange, grapefruit, and strawberry respondents, the new Immigration
Reform and Control Act (IRCA) is expected to have a substantial impact on the supply
of seasonal field workers. Of the 75% of all respondents expecting IRCA to have an
effect, almost all predicted that IRCA would result in decreasing the supply of workers.


Slightly over 70% of responding fruit and nut employers believed that there were
some undocumented foreign workers in seasonal farm work in the 1987-88 season. Of
those respondents indicating that there were some illegals, 81% believed that illegals
represented less than 41% of the seasonal labor force, with very few fruit and nut
respondents feeling that undocumented workers represented over 60% of the seasonal
labor force.

For orange, grapefruit, and strawberry respondents, almost two-thirds expect to
have problems securing an adequate supply of seasonal farm labor in the future.
Respondents in the citrus and strawberry industries were concerned with increased
competition for seasonal labor from the nonagricultural industries in Central and South
Florida, particularly from the food service, hotel/motel, tourist, and construction
industries. Also, migration of farm workers to states north of Florida in the Spring
months often creates shortages of workers for Valencia orange and other harvests.
Also, many respondents believe that present and future labor supplies are adversely
affected by government welfare programs.

Of those fruit and nut employers who expect to have future labor supply
problems, the study attempted to determine what actions employers would take to deal
with the problem. The possible actions evaluated included the following: increase in
wage rates, increase in labor recruitment efforts, housing for workers and their families,
start or increase fringe benefits, shift to registered labor contractor, hire H-2A temporary
foreign workers, join a cooperative that supplies harvest workers, adopt labor saving
technology, change production to a crop requiring less labor, and/or decrease
production or quit farming altogether.
KEY WORDS
Farm labor, fruits and nuts, citrus, strawberries,
wage rates, seasonal workers, Florida

iv








PREFACE
Passage of the United States Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) in 1986
changed many of the fundamentals of the domestic farm labor market. Unfortunately,
there has been an insufficient knowledge base on farm labor markets in Florida and
elsewhere to begin to analyze and/or predict future directions in farm labor supplies,
wage rates, and other relevant aspects of the farm labor market for seasonal and
perishable crops.

This report represents an attempt to fill some of the gaps in our current
understanding of Florida farm labor markets, particularly regarding the relatively labor
intensive fruit and nut industries. Special attention will be placed upon labor practices
in the orange, grapefruit, and strawberry sectors of the industry. Survey results are
reported for such topics as wage rates for seasonal workers, some sociodemographic
characteristics of workers, prospective labor supplies, the likely impact of IRCA, and
possible actions to be taken by employers faced with labor shortages.

Statements and interpretations in this report are the responsibility of the
authors and are not meant to reflect the official position or policy of the Institute
of Food and Agricultural Sciences of the University of Florida or any other agency
or group, public or private. It is hoped, however, that this report will shed some
new knowledge on current farm labor markets in Florida, the sociodemographics
of farm workers, and the outlook regarding future farm labor supplies.




ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

The authors are indebted to many fruit and nut growers in Florida, particularly
citrus and strawberry growers, who responded to our call for farm labor information.
Those who completed the lengthy questionnaire deserve special recognition.

Several industry organizations and individuals were highly supportive of this
study effort, particularly the following:
Walter Kates, Florida Fruit and Vegetable Association
Charles F. Hinton, Florida Strawberry Growers Association
Scotty Butler, Florida Farm Bureau Federation
Michael Carlton, Florida Citrus Mutual

A special note of thanks is extended to Robert L. Free, Ray Crickenberger, and
Aubrey Bordelon of the Florida Agricultural Statistics Service for their assistance with
this special project. Also, appreciation is given to Dr. Larry Libby, Chairman of the
Food and Resource Economics Department, IFAS, for his overall administrative support
of the project.

v










CONTENTS

Page

A BSTRAC T .................................................... III

KEY W O RDS ................................................... III

PREFACE ..................................................... V

ACKNOW LEDGMENTS ............................................. V

INTRO DUCTIO N .................................................. 1

TH E SU RVEY .................................................... 1

CHARACTERISTICS OF RESPONDING EMPLOYERS ...................... 3

CHARACTERISTICS OF FARM WORKERS .............................. 7
Ethnic Com position .......................................... 7
Sex of Seasonal W workers ...................................... 8
Age and Age Distribution of Workers ............................. 9
Average Workdays in Peak Week ............................... 10

LABOR MARKET RESULTS ........................................ 11
W age R ates ............................................... 11
Labor Supplies ............................................ 16
Im pact of IRC A ............................................. 17
Illegal Im m grants ........................................... 18

POSSIBLE EMPLOYER ACTIONS TO DEAL WITH LABOR SUPPLY PROBLEMS 18
Increase W age Rate ......................................... 20
Increase Labor Recruitment Efforts .............................. 20
Provide Housing ........................................... 20
Increase Benefits ........................................... 20
Shift to Registered Labor Contractor ........................... 20
Hire H-2A W workers .......................................... 21
Join A Cooperative That Supplies Field Workers .................... 21
Change Production Harvesting Technology ........... ......... .21
Change to Crop Requiring Less Labor ........................... 21
Decrease Production or Quit Farming ............................ 21

APPENDIX A: The Questionnaire .................................... 23



vi









FARM LABOR IN THE FRUIT AND NUT INDUSTRIES
OF FLORIDA



INTRODUCTION

Florida is a major farm labor state and the fruit and nut industries represent a
significant share of total seasonal labor requirements, particularly for citrus and
strawberry harvests.

Of the state's total of approximately 80,000 seasonal agricultural workers
employed in the peak week in 1987, the largest number were seasonal workers in the
Florida citrus industry with 34,000 in the peak week. Excluding the sugarcane industry
with approximately 10,000 seasonal foreign workers in 1987, the next largest agricultural
industry is Florida strawberries with 8,000 employees in the peak week. The only other
fruit or nut industry with more than 1,000 seasonal workers employed in the peak week
of 1987 was the lemon and lime industry of South Florida with 2,200 (1988 Florida
Statistical Abstract).

For purposes of this survey, fruits and nuts are defined to include oranges,
grapefruit, tangerines, lemons and limes, other citrus, strawberries, pecans, avocados,
and other fruits and nuts. Blueberries and grapes are included in the other fruits and
nuts category, but show signs of becoming major commodities for the future.

From a labor perspective, essentially all harvesting is done manually in Florida's
fruit and nut industries, except possibly the pecans and wine grape industries.
However, pecans and wine grapes represent less than 0.2% of fruit and nut marketing.
Various mechanical and/or abscission chemical technologies are under experimentation
for harvesting of Florida citrus production, but no single labor saving technique has yet
proved to be cost effective when compared with manual harvesting methods.

The twelve most important fruit and nut crops in Florida in cash marketing (in
order of importance) are as follows: oranges, grapefruit, strawberries, tangerines,
tangelos, limes, temples, avocados, honey tangerines, lemons, pecans, and K-early
citrus fruit. The cash value of these commodities marketed exceeds $1.0 billion
annually. Total seasonal labor requirements for these commodities is roughly 43,000
workers in the peak week or over one-half of Florida's total seasonal farm labor
workforce.

THE SURVEY

Approximately 1,400 Florida farmers, all believed to be horticultural growers, were
mailed questionnaires in the Late Spring and Summer of 1988 for responses to a variety
of questions regarding the employment of farm workers. The questionnaire focused
upon wage rates paid, demographics of workers employed, and farm employer views








of farm labor market problems. The sample of producers drawn was believed to be
representative, although not completely random. Nonrespondents to the first mailing
were sent a second request for returning the questionnaire. A copy of the questionnaire
is enclosed as Appendix A.

A total of 474 questionnaires were returned for an overall response rate of 34%.
Of the total number of respondents, 152 were from fruit and nut growers or 32% of the
total of 474 (Table 1). Unfortunately, less than one-half of the fruit and nut respondents
fully completed the questionnaire. However, many of the "incomplete" responses were
from growers who do not employ farm workers directly, are not presently involved with
fruit, vegetable, or ornamental industries, or are no longer actively involved with farming
operations.

Table 1. Number of Respondents by Type of Farm and Completeness of Response to
Questionnaire

Status of Returned Questionnaire
Type of Farm Total
Completed Incomplete

"--number--
Fruit & Nut 70 82 152

Vegetable & Melon 42 6 48

Ornamental 100 58 158

Mixed 32 0 32

Unknown 0 84 84

Total 244 230 474




Mixed farm are defined to include farms that have fruits and vegetables, fruits and
ornamentals, vegetables and ornamentals or all three commodity types.

The substantive results of this report are drawn from the 70 completed
questionnaires from fruit and nut growers, as well as from mixed growers producing
citrus and strawberries. The respondents of these questionnaires are believed to fairly
represent farmers of fruits and nuts, particularly citrus, who hire directly seasonal and
permanent agricultural workers. There was no attempt to survey labor contractors to
obtain comparable labor information because of inadequate survey resources.


2










CHARACTERISTICS OF RESPONDING EMPLOYERS


Including fruit and nut, as well as mixed horticultural farms, there were 98
respondents that produced fruit and nut crops during the 1986/87 and/or 1987/88
seasons. Roughly two-thirds of these respondents produced oranges and one-half
produced grapefruit, while one-third of the respondents produced strawberries (Table
2).

Table 2. Number of Respondents Producing Fruit and Nut Crops


Commodity Number of Respondents

Oranges 68

Grapefruit 52

Tangerines 21

Lemons/Limes 1

Strawberries 30

Pecans 5

Avocados 1

At Least One Fruit & Nut Crop 98



Of the 98 respondents producing fruit and nut crops, only 42 or 43% produced
only one fruit or nut crop. Thirty-three respondents produced two fruit and nut crops,
while 22 respondents produced three fruit and nut crops. Only 1 respondent produced
four different fruit and nut crops.

As would be expected, practically all of the fruit and nut respondents were
located in Central and South Florida. And most respondents had their operations in only
one region, Central, South, or North Florida. However, 17 orange respondents
produced oranges in two regions and 15 grapefruit respondents produced in two
regions. All but one strawberry respondents was located in the Central region (Table
3).

3











Table 3. Distribution of Respondents by Regions Where Production Occurred, by
Selected Commodities

Region of Production
Specific Total
Commodity North FL Central FL South FL Total Mixed
Region Region Region Single Regions
Only Only Only Only

Oranges 0 46 5 51 17 68

Grapefruit 0 32 5 37 15 52

Strawberries 0 28 1 29 1 30

Fruit & Nut 2 48 5 55 15 70

Mixed 3 22 4 29 3 32



A significant characteristic of farm employers in Florida's fruit and nut industries
is the relatively large scale of operations. Of the 59 respondents who provided market
sales data, the estimated total value of fruits and nuts marketed in the 1987-88 season
was $139 million. Average per firm sales was $2.3 million.

Horticultural growers, particularly citrus growers, utilize a variety of methods for
meeting their harvesting and other seasonal labor requirements. For fruit and nut
respondents as a whole 42% hired their seasonal workers directly, while 36% utilized
both direct hiring practices and outside farm labor services. While 22% of our fruit and
nut respondents hired seasonal labor only through labor contractors, cooperatives and
other labor supply organizations, this statistic understates the real incidence of outside
labor services because this survey concentrated upon farm employers (Table 4).

There is considerable difference in the patterns of labor recruitment for oranges
and grapefruit when compared with strawberries. For orange and grapefruit employers,
roughly one-third hired all of their seasonal laborers directly, while for strawberry
employers almost three-fourths of the respondents hired all of their seasonal workers
directly. It is more common to find orange and grapefruit employers utilizing both direct
and indirect hiring methods when compared with strawberry employers (Table 4).



4










Table 4. Percentage of Fruit and Nut Respondents Hiring Seasonal Field Workers
Directly and Indirectly, Selected Commodities

Percentage
Specific Total
Commodity Hired Seasonal Hired Through Hired Both Percent
Workers Contractor, Directly
Directly Coop,etc. &
Only Only Indirectly

Oranges 33 24 42 100

Grapefruit 35 18 47 100

Strawberries 73 7 20 100

Fruits & Nuts 42 22 36 100




The volume of employment in the peak week for individual fruit and nut
commodities is obtained from farms classified as mixed and fruit and nut. Many of the
mixed farms are, for example, engaged in citrus production, along with vegetables
and/or ornamentals. Thus, the level of employment for orange producers in these two
types of farms exceeds the level of employment for fruit and nut growers only.

The number of hired seasonal workers for the peak week of orange production
and harvesting by respondents to this survey was 7,193 in the 1986-87 season
compared to 8,033 for the 1987-88 season, an increase from 114 seasonal workers per
firm in 1986-87 to 128 workers per firm in the 1987-88 season. For grapefruit, the
average responding employer hired 148 seasonal workers in the 1987-88 season, an
increase from an average of 134 seasonal workers in the 1986-87 season. The peak
level of employment also increased between the two seasons for strawberry employers
or from 1,994 seasonal workers in 1986-87 to 2,333 workers in the 1987-88 season. The
average responding strawberry firm employed 80 seasonal workers in the peak week
of the 1987-88 season (Table 5).






5









Table 5. Number of Hired Seasonal Workers, Respondents, Peak Week, Selected Fruit
and Nut Commodities


1986-87 1987-88
Specific
Commodity Number No. Avg. Number No. Avg.
Workers Obs. Per Firm Workers Obs. Per Firm


Oranges 7,193 63 114 8,033 63 128

Grapefruit 6,449 48 134 7,276 49 148

Strawberries 1,994 28 71 2,333 29 80




The average respondent producing oranges hired an average of 34 permanent
workers in the 1987-88 season, while the average grapefruit producer employed 42
permanent workers. For strawberry employers, the average number of permanent
workers hired for the 1987-88 season was 4 (Table 6).

Table 6. Number of Hired Permanent Workers, 1987-88 Season, Respondents, Selected
Fruit and Nut Commodities

1987-88
Specific
Commodity Permanent No. of Average
Workers Obs. Per Firm

Oranges 2,111 63 34

Grapefruit 2,080 49 42

Strawberries 114 28 4




The total number of man hours worked by seasonal employees in fruit and nut
industries increased between the 1986-87 and 1987-88 seasons. Per firm man hour
levels for strawberry employers exceeded those of orange and grapefruit employers in

6








the peak week. For example, the average strawberry employer utilized 3,295 man hours
of seasonal labor in the peak week of the 1987-88 season, compared to man hour
averages of 2,578 and 2,556 for orange and grapefruit employers, respectively (Table
7).

Table 7. Man Hours of Seasonal Workers in Peak Week, Respondents, Selected Fruit
and Nut Commodities

1986-87 1987-88
Specific
Commodity Man Hours Avg. Per Firm Man Hours Avg. Per Firm

Oranges 109,702 2,334 122,675 2,556

Grapefruit 84,875 2,358 95,369 2,578

Strawberries 72,762 2,799 85,665 3,295

Fruits & Nuts 102,493 2,092 113,517 2,317





CHARACTERISTICS OF FARM WORKERS



Ethnic Composition

For the fruit and nut industry as a whole, Hispanic workers comprise the largest
ethnic grouping of seasonal farm workers with slightly over 60% of the total. Roughly
20% of seasonal workers in fruits and nuts are American Blacks, plus an additional 10%
Haitian and other foreign blacks. Non-Hispanic domestic Caucasians represent less
than 6% of the total (Table 8).

For the three commodities singled out for special attention, there is considerable
difference in the ethnic composition of citrus as opposed to strawberry workers in
seasonal field occupations. For strawberries, essentially the entire seasonal workforce
is either Mexican or other Hispanic. For oranges and grapefruit, the seasonal workforce
includes roughly 30% American, Haitian, or other foreign Blacks, plus 8 to 9% non-
Hispanic domestic Caucasians. Nevertheless, Mexican and other Hispanics account
for approximately 60% of the seasonal workforce in oranges and grapefruit (Table 8).



7










Table 8. Ethnic Distribution of Seasonal Farm Workers, by Selected Commodities

Percentage
Specific Total
Commodity Domestic Mexican Other American Haitian Other Foreign Other Percent
Caucasians Hispanic Black Black Black Workers

Oranges 8.08 56.81 3.71 21.05 8.07 1.41 0.87 100
Grapefruit 8.46 53.95 3.84 22.64 8.66 1.49 0.97 100
Strawberries 0.58 91.86 7.43 0.06 0.07 0.00 0.00 100
Fruit & Nuts 5.77 59.86 2.93 20.77 7.87 2.08 0.72 100



Sex of Seasonal Workers

Almost 80% of the seasonal farm workers on fruit and nut farms in Florida are
men. Conversely, 20.5% of these workers are women. This same pattern holds quite
well for seasonal orange and grapefruit workers. However, 31.4% of seasonal
strawberry workers are women (Table 9).

Table 9. Distribution of Seasonal Fruit and Nut Workers by Sex and Selected
Commodities, 1987-88 Season


Specific Percent Percent
Commodity Female Male


Oranges 19.31 80.69

Grapefruit 19.94 80.06

Strawberries 31.38 68.62

Fruits & Nuts 20.49 79.51







8









Age and Age Distribution of Workers

The average age of seasonal workers in fruits and nuts is estimated to be 35.8
years. The average age of worker is slightly higher for seasonal workers in oranges
and grapefruit, but barely below 30 years of age for strawberry workers (Table 10).

Table 10. Average Age of Seasonal Fruit and Nut Workers, by Selected Commodities,
1987-88 Season


Specific Commodity Average Age
(Years)

Oranges 37.48

Grapefruit 37.71

Strawberries 29.52

Fruits & Nuts 35.76



In terms of age distribution, there are relatively few workers 65 years or older
(less than 3%) and less than 8% seasonal workers younger than 21 years of age for the
fruit and nut industries as a whole. Thus, almost 90% of the seasonal workforce in fruits
and nuts is between the ages of 21 and 64 years of age. For the strawberry industry,
however, seasonal workers tend to have a younger age profile when compared with
citrus workers (Table 11).
Table 11. Age Distribution of Seasonal Fruit and Nut Workers, By Selected
Commodities, 1987-88 Season

Percent
Specific Total
Commodity < 20 years 21 35 36 64 65 or >

Oranges 9.51 51.69 35.85 2.96 100

Grapefruit 8.70 51.12 37.14 3.03 100

Strawberries 10.40 69.89 19.19 0.52 100

Fruits & Nuts 7.89 54.53 34.82 2.76 100

9









Average Workdays in Peak Week

The peak week normally represents the peak of the harvest activity for the entire
season. In the fruit and nut industries seasonal workers are reportedly employed six
(5.99) days per week in the peak week. For the strawberry industry the average
number of days worked in the peak week was 6.5 for the 1987-88 season (Table 12).

Table 12. Average Number of Days Worked in Peak Week, Fruit and Nut Industries,
Selected Commodities, 1987-88 Season

Specific Commodity Average Number of Days

Oranges 5.92

Grapefruit 5.84

Strawberries 6.50

Fruits & Nuts 5.99



On all types of fruit and nut farms, workers were employed an average of over
40 hours in the peak weeks of both survey seasons, 1986-87 and 1987-88. The average
workweek involved two to three more hours per strawberry worker when compared with
seasonal citrus workers (Table 13).

Table 13. Average Hours Worked Per Fruit and Nut Worker in the Peak Week, Selected
Commodities, 1986-87 and 1987-88 Seasons

1986-87 1987-88
Specific Average Average
Commodity Hours Hours
Worked Worked

Oranges 47.7 47.2

Grapefruit 48.1 47.4

Strawberries 50.5 50.7

Fruits & Nuts 46.8 46.8


10









LABOR MARKET RESULTS



Wage Rates

An important aspect of this survey dealt with the estimation of hourly wage rates
paid by employers to seasonal field workers and nonseasonal employees in Florida's
fruit and nut industries. A limited amount of piece rate information was also estimated.

Selected Hand Skills. Three major types of hand skills were singled out for wage
rate estimation: planting, weeding/hoeing and harvesting/picking. The results of Table
14 show the sharp difference between the average hourly wage rate for planting versus
the wage rate for harvesting/picking, particularly for oranges and grapefruit. In the
1987-88 season, the average hourly wage rate for planting orange trees was $3.87
compared with $5.74 for harvesting/picking or a difference of $1.87 per hour. For
grapefruit, the difference was $2.04 per hour, while the difference between planting and
harvesting wage rates for strawberries was less than $1 per hour for the 1987-88
season (Table 14).

There was only a minor increase in average wage rates for the planting and
harvesting hand skills in fruit and nut industries between the 1986-87 and 1987-88
seasons. For seasonal workers planting oranges, the average hourly wage rate
increased from $3.80 per hour in the 1986-87 season to $3.87 per hour for the 1987-
88 season. The increase was also 7 cents per hour for planting grapefruit between the
two seasons. For planting strawberries, the average hourly rate remained the same at
$3.62 for the two seasons (Table 14).

For the fruit and nut industry as a whole, the average wage rate for
picking/harvesting approached $6.00 for both 1986-87 and 1987-88 seasons. The
increase over the two seasons for harvesting/picking was most pronounced for oranges
with the hourly rate increasing from $5.66 per hour in the 1986-87 season to $5.74 for
the 1987-88 season (Table 14).













11









Table 14. Average Hourly Wage Rates for Selected Hand-Skills ,Selected Fruit and Nut
Commodities, Seasonal Workers, 1986-87 and 1987-88 Seasons

1986-1987 1987-1988
Average Hourly Wage Average Hourly Wage
Specific
Commodity Planting Hand Harvest Planting Hand Harvest
/ /
Picking Picking

---------- ($/Hr.)------------ ----------- ($/Hr.)------------
Oranges 3.80 5.66 3.87 5.74

Grapefruit 3.79 5.86 3.86 5.90

Strawberries 3.62 4.54 3.62 4.56

Fruits & Nuts 3.81 5.93 3.82 5.96


Average hourly rates for weeding and hoeing fruit and nut crops are slightly
below those of planting. For oranges and grapefruit, the average hourly wage rates for
weeding and hoeing functions are in the $3.50 per hour to $3.60 per hour. Similar
results were obtained for the fruit and nut industry as a whole. There also very little
change in these wage rates between the two seasons analyzed (Table 15).

Table 15. Average Hourly Wage Rates for Weeding/Hoeing, Selected Fruit and Nut
Commodities, Seasonal Workers, 1986-87 and 1987 88 Seasons.
Average Hourly Wage Rate
for
Weeding/Hoeing Labor
Specific Commodity
1986-1987 1987 -1988

($/Hr.) ($/Hr.)
Oranges 3.54 3.55

Grapefruit 3.53 3.53

Fruits & Nuts 3.55 3.57


12








Selected Piece Rates. A limited amount of piece rate data was obtained from
the survey. In the citrus industry, the average piece rate for harvesting/picking a box
of fruit was estimated to be 67 cents per box in the 1986-87 season, increasing to 70
cents per box for the 1987-88 season. These estimates include the harvesting of
oranges, grapefruit, and specialty citrus fruit (Table 16).

The piece rate for harvesting pecans was estimated to be 16 cents per pound for
the 1986-87 season, increasing one cent per pound to 17 cents for the 1987-88 season
(Table 16).

The piece rate for planting strawberries was estimated to be $7.08 per 1,000
plants in the 1986-87 season, increasing to $7.13 for the 1987-88 season. The piece
rate for harvesting strawberries was estimated to be $1.23 per flat in the 1986-87 season
compared with a slight increase to $1.24 per flat for the 1987-88 season (Table 16).


Table 16. Average Piece Rates for Selected Hand Skills, Selected Fruit and Nut
Commodities, 1986-87 and 1987-88 Seasons


Activity/Commodity Unit of Measure 1986-87 1987-88


---------Dollars----------

Harvesting Citrus box 0.67 0.70

Harvesting Pecans Ib. 0.16 0.17

Planting Strawberries 1,000 plants 7.08 7.13

Harvesting Strawberries flat 1.23 1.24




Tractor Drivers and Other Machine Skills. A limited amount of data was obtained
from respondents in fruit and nut industries regarding the wage rates paid to both
seasonal and permanent tractor drivers, as well as workers performing other machine
skills.

For the 1986-87 season, seasonal tractor drivers received an average wage rate
of $4.27 in both the orange and grapefruit industries, with an hourly rate of $4.36 for
tractor drivers in the strawberry industry. Seasonal workers for other machine skills in
various fruit and nut industries received approximately 30 cents per hour more than
tractor drivers for the 1986-87 season (Table 17).

13








Table 17. Average Hourly Wage Rates for Tractor Drivers and Other Machine Skills,
Selected Commodities, Seasonal Workers, 1986-87 Season.

1986 1987
Average Hourly Wage Rate
Specific Commodity
Tractor Drivers Other Machine Skills

.--------($/Hr.)--------- -------($/Hr.) --------

Oranges 4.27 4.56

Grapefruit 4.27 4.60

Strawberries 4.36 4.71

Fruits & Nuts 4.13 4.42



Permanent or year around tractor drivers and other farm machine workers
received hourly wage rates above those received for seasonal workers performing the
same tasks. For example, the hourly rate paid to permanent tractor drivers in the
orange industry was $5.50 compared with the hourly rate of $4.27 for seasonal tractor
drivers in the same industry (Table 18).
Table 18. Average Hourly Wage Rates for Tractor Drivers and Other Machine Skills,
Selected Commodities, Full Time Workers, 1986-87 and 1987-88 Seasons.

Average Hourly Wage Rate
Specific
Commodity Tractor Drivers Other Machine Skills

1986-87 1987-88 1986-87 1987-88

.-------------($/Hr.)-- -.....(/Hr.) ($ r.)----------------

Oranges 5.50 5.50 5.50 5.50

Fruits & Nuts 5.50 5.50 5.50 5.50


Nonseasonal Employees. There was surprising uniformity in average hourly wage
rates of full time nonseasonal employees for the orange, grapefruit, and strawberry

14








industries at approximately $4.75 per hour. For part time nonseasonal employees, the
fruit and nut industry average wage rate of $3.88 for the 1987-88 season is exceeded
by the strawberry and orange workers. In every case, full time nonseasonal workers
received average wage rates above those received by part time nonseasonal workers
(Table 19).


Table 19. Average Hourly Wage Rates, Nonseasonal Employees, Selected
Commodities, 1987-88 Season.


Average Hourly Wage Rate
($/Hr.)
Specific Commodity
Full-Time Part-Time
Employees Employees

Oranges 4.76 3.95

Grapefruit 4.75 3.82

Strawberries 4.78 4.10

Fruits & Nuts 4.72 3.88



Expected Wage Rates. During the Spring and Summer of 1988, respondents
were asked to evaluate the question of likely wage rate changes for seasonal field
workers for the next season (the 1988-89 season). Almost 60% of the fruit and nut
respondents did not expect any change, while 42% felt that hourly wage rates would
change between the 1987-88 and 1988-89 seasons. For orange and grapefruit
respondents, the answers were very close to the fruit and nut industry averages.
However, for strawberry respondents, 80% felt that there would be no change in wage
rates between these two seasons (Table 20).











15








Table 20. Expected Wage Rate Changes for Seasonal Field Workers for Next Season
(1988-89), Selected Commodities

If Yes
Employers Employers
Expecting Change Expecting Wage Rate
In Wage Rate To
Specific Commodity
Yes No Increase Decrease

---.-----------------.--------- P..ercent----------------- ------------
Oranges 41.7 58.3 95.8 4.2

Grapefruit 41.3 58.7 94.4 5.6

Strawberries 20.0 80.0 83.3 16.7

Fruit & Nuts 41.9 58.1 88.0 12.0



Of those fruit and nut respondents expecting wage rates to change in the next
season, 88% thought that wage rates would increase, while only 12% expected wage
rates for seasonal workers to decrease. For orange and grapefruit respondents,
roughly 95% of respondents expecting changes in wage rates felt that wage rates
would increase over the two seasons (Table 20).

Labor Supplies

Roughly one-half of the respondents in the orange, grapefruit, and strawberry
industries felt that the supply of seasonal field workers in the peak week of employment
had been adequate for the three seasons beginning in 1986-87. Very few respondents
characterized the labor supply situation as "abundant" in any of the three seasons.
However, the degree of pessimism concerning labor supplies increased over the three
seasons. For example, in the orange industry 14 of 66 or 21% of the respondents felt
that labor supplies were "not enough" for the 1986-87 season, while 28 of 63
respondents or 44% viewed the 1988-89 season as a season of labor scarcity. Similar
views were expressed by strawberry respondents. For the 1986-87 season, only 4 of
30 or 13% of the strawberry growers indicated that seasonal labor supplies were "not
enough". However, for the 1988-89 season, 13 of 29 or 45% expected labor supply
problems (Table 21).




16









Table 21. Supply of Farm Field Workers in Peak Week, Selected Commodities, 1986-
87, 1987-88 and 1988-89 Seasons.


Supply of Farm Field Workers
Specific Not Enough Adequate Abundant
Commodity
1986-87 1987-88 1988-89 1986-87 1987-88 1988-89 1986-87 1987-88 1988-89

Oranges 14 20 28 48 44 35 4 1 0
Grapefruit 11 15 21 35 33 26 4 1 0
Strawberries 4 3 13 22 24 15 4 2 1




Impact of IRCA
For the orange, grapefruit, and strawberry respondents, the new Immigration
Reform and Control Act (IRCA) is expected to have a substantial impact on the supply
of seasonal field workers. Over three fourths of the respondents in the orange,
grapefruit, and strawberry industries expect IRCA to affect the supply of seasonal
workers. Almost all predicted that IRCA would have the effect of decreasing the supply
of workers (Table 22). The predominant view of fruit and nut respondents is that many
newly legalized farm workers will abandon seasonal agricultural employment for year
around nonagricultural work.

Table 22. Expected Effect of New Immigration Law on Supply of Seasonal Field
Workers, Selected Commodities

If Yes, Employers Who
Think There Will Be

Specific Commodity No Yes Increase Decrease
Effect Effect in in
Supply Supply


Oranges 14 48 2 46

Grapefruit 11 36 2 34

Strawberries 5 25 1 24




17










Illegal Immigrants

At the time this survey was being conducted, qualified undocumented workers
still had an opportunity to apply to become temporary resident aliens of the United
States under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers (SAWs) program of IRCA. Employers
were asked the question: "What percentage of seasonal field workers employed do
you think are illegal immigrants?"

Data on this question were not obtained for selected fruit and nut commodities.
For the fruit and nut industries, almost 30% of the respondents believed that there were
no undocumented workers in the industry, with 71.2% indicating that there were at least
some illegal aliens employed. This ratio of "no" illegals to "some" illegals was
comparable for both fruit and nut respondents and the total of all horticultural
respondents.

Of those fruit and nut respondents indicating that there were "some" illegals, 81 %
believed that illegals represented less than 41% of the seasonal labor force, with very
few fruit and nut respondents feeling that undocumented workers represented over
60% of the seasonal labor force. In contrast 18.8% of the respondents over all
horticultural industries (fruit, vegetable, ornamental, and mixed farms) believed that
illegals accounted for over 60% of the seasonal farm work force (Table 23). Almost 9%
of these horticultural respondents thought that the rate of illegals was 81 to 100%.

Table 23. Percent Distribution of Respondents By Level of Illegal Immigrants


Total Total Percent Distribution of 128 Respondents Who Think There are Illegal Immigrants
Believe Believe
Type of Farm There There 1-20% 21-40% 41-60% 61-80% 81-100%
is are
None Some
Fruit & Nut 28.8 71.2 35.1 45.9 16.2 2.7 0.0
Total Average 26.4 73.6 21.9 40.7 18.8 10.2 8,6




POSSIBLE EMPLOYER ACTIONS TO DEAL WITH LABOR SUPPLY PROBLEMS


There was some degree of conformity in the outlook concerning future farm labor
supplies among orange, grapefruit, and strawberry respondents. Almost two-thirds of
these respondents expect to have problems securing an adequate supply of seasonal
farm labor in the future. The problem is perceived to be slightly more acute in oranges
when compared to strawberries (Table 24).


18









Table 24. Employers Expecting Future Problems in Securing Adequate Supply of
Seasonal Farm Labor, Selected Commodities


Total % Expecting % Expecting
Specific Respondents No Problem with Problem with Total
Commodity Future Labor Supply Future Labor Supply


Oranges 61 34 66 100

Grapefruit 47 38 62 100

Strawberries 29 41 59 100




Seasonality and perishability in fruit and nut harvests create sharp peaks in labor
demand. Respondents in citrus and strawberry industries were concerned with
increased competition for seasonal labor from the nonagricultural industries in Central
and South Florida, particularly the food service, hotel/motel, tourist, and construction
industries. Also, migration of farm workers to states north of Florida in the late Spring
months often creates shortages of workers for the Valencia orange harvest. Also, many
respondents believe that present and future labor supplies are adversely affected by
government welfare programs.

Of those employers who expect to have future labor supply problems, the study
attempted to determine what actions employers would take to deal with the problem.
Possible actions included the following:

Increase Wage Rates
Increase Labor Recruitment Efforts
Provide Housing for Workers and Family
Start or Increase Benefits to Workers
Shift to Registered Labor Contractor
Hire H-2A Temporary Foreign Agricultural Workers
Join a Cooperative that Supplies Harvest Season Workers
Decrease the Need for Field Labor by Increasing Labor-
Saving Devices
Change Production to a Crop Requiring Less Labor
Decrease Production or Quit Farming




19









Increase Wage Rate

Roughly two-thirds of fruit and nut respondents did not agree with the proposition
that increasing wage rates would solve the problem of future labor supplies. There was
not uniformity in responses between citrus and strawberry growers. Stated alternatively,
approximately 40% of orange and grapefruit respondents believed that an increased
wage rate would insure adequate labor supplies, while only 27% of the strawberry
respondents agreed this proposition (Table 25).


Increase Labor Recruitment Efforts

Respondents did not view increased labor recruitment practices to be sufficient
to insure an adequate labor supply for fruit and nut field labor requirements. While the
"no" responses exceeded the "yes" responses two to one in oranges and grapefruit,
increased labor recruitment efforts were endorsed by almost one-half of the strawberry
respondents (Table 25).


Provide Housing

Citrus and strawberry respondents were sharply divided on the issue of housing
for workers and their families. Almost 80% of citrus respondents said "no" to providing
housing, while 80% of the strawberry respondents indicated "yes" to provision of
housing (Table 25). Many strawberry respondents already provide housing for their
workers and believe it is necessary for maintaining adequate labor supplies.


Increase Benefits

Starting or increasing fringe benefits to seasonal workers were not regarded as
an important method of insuring an adequate supply of future labor needs. Only 12%
of fruit and nut respondents said "yes" to this proposition, with 88% opposed. The
response was even more negative among strawberry respondents (Table 25).


Shift to Registered Labor Contractor

Fifty percent of the orange and grapefruit respondents indicated that they would
shift to a labor contractor to insure an adequate seasonal labor supply in the future.
For strawberry growers, however, only 22% indicated that a shift labor contractors
would solve the future labor supply problem (Table 25). Many of the respondents that
indicated "no" to labor contractors already use them for securing labor supplies. Thus,
Table 25 appears to understate the importance of labor contractors in the fruit and
nut industry.


20








Hire H-2A Workers

For the fruit and nut industry as a whole, 34% of the respondents would turn to
the H-2A program to insure adequate seasonal farm labor supplies. For orange
respondents, the positive response rate increases to 41% in favor of the H-2A program
for dealing with labor supply problems (Table 25).


Join a Cooperative That Supplies Field Workers

Roughly one in four respondents said "yes" to joining a cooperative for supplying
harvest workers to solve future labor problems. The response was slightly more
positive for the orange industry (Table 25). Since many respondents, particularly in the
citrus industry, were already members of cooperatives, the results of this survey tend
to underestimate the potential importance of
cooperatives in dealing with labor supply problems.


Change Production/Harvesting Technology

Only 31% of the respondents in the fruit and nut industry felt that could insure
adequate labor supplies in the future by reducing labor demand through the adoption
of labor saving devices. For the orange industry, 36% of the respondents felt that
improved production and/or harvesting technology could deal with the future labor
supply problem (Table 25). Various mechanical and/or chemical harvesting methods
have been tested for citrus harvesting. These technologies have included shake and
catch frames/systems, abscission chemicals, pick-up machines, and the application of
computerized robotics. These systems/technologies have not yet proven to be cost
effective when compared with manual harvesting systems.


Change to Crop Requiring Less Labor

Because of the dominance of perennial crops in the Florida fruit and nut industry,
it is not surprising that very few respondents would change to a different crop requiring
less labor if labor supplies became prohibitively scarce. For orange and grapefruit
respondents, only 17 and 16 percent, respectively, would change production to a crop
requiring less labor. However, for strawberry growers, 36% would switch to less labor
intensive crops because of labor scarcity (Table 25).

Decrease Production or Quit Farming

Strawberry and citrus respondents have divergent views of their future production
levels under scarce labor conditions. For strawberry growers, 74% of our respondents
indicated that they would decrease production or quit farming altogether if labor supply
conditions dictated that outcome. However, only 30% and 25% of orange and grapefruit
respondents, respectively, would decrease production or quit farming because of labor

21










supply problems (Table 25).

Table 25. Employer Activities to Insure Adequate Seasonal Labor Supply in The Future,
Percentage Yes or No, Selected Commodity


Percentage

Activities
Oranges Grapefruit Strawberries Fruit & Nut

No Yes No Yes No Yes No Yes


Increase Wage Rate 59 41 61 39 73 27 65 35
Increase Labor
Recruitment Efforts 66 34 67 33 52 48 66 34
Providing Housing For
Workers and Family 72 28 80 20 20 80 69 31
Start or Increase
Benefits to Workers 86 14 89 11 93 7 88 12
Shift to Registered
Labor Contractor 50 50 50 50 78 22 53 47
Hire H2-A Temporary
Foreign Agricultural
Workers 59 41 68 33 65 35 66 34
Join A Cooperative That
Supplies Harvest Season
Field Workers 70 30 75 25 75 25 74 26
Decrease The Need For
Field Labor by Increasing
Labor Saving Devices 64 36 66 34 70 30 69 31
Change Production To A Crop
Requiring Less Labor 83 17 84 16 64 36 88 12
Decrease Production or Quit
Farming 70 30 75 25 26 74 73 27





















22

















APPENDIX A





THE QUESTIONNAIRE










23











UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES
FOOD AND RESOURCE ECONOMICS DEPARTMENT

FLORIDA FARM LABOR RESEARCH SURVEY
FLORIDA FRUIT. VEGETABLE AND
ORNAMENTAL HORTICULTURAL GROWERS


CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION

EMPLOYER INFORMATION:

Type of Business:
Owner/Operator
Partnership
Corporation
Cooperative

Name of County where farm is located: Town:

If production occurs in more than one county, please identify all counties:


Job Title of Respondent

What Maior Products were produced in the past two seasons?
Check the categories that apply to your operation.

Fruits and Nuts Venetables and Melons Ornamentals
Oranges Tomatoes Foliage
Grapefruit Sweet Corn Cut Flowers
Tangerines Potatoes Pot Flowers
Lemons / Limes Green Peppers Bedding Plants
Strawberries Celery Cut Greens/Ferns
Pecans Lettuce Woody Ornamentals
Avocados Watermelons Other Ornamentals
Other Fruits/Nuts Other Vegetables/Melons
If other, specify below:. If other, specify below: If other, specify below:


Estimate the value of the above marked products produced in 1987-88? $_

Did you directly hire seasonal or temporary farm field labor during the past two seasons?

Yes
No

Did you hire seasonal farm field workers through labor contractors during the past two seasons?

Yes
No







FOR FARM EMPLOYERS: (If you hired seasonal farm labor directly or hired seasonal farm
labor through labor contractors Please Answer the questions below
and provide as much information as possible.)

1. How many seasonal farm field workers were employed during your peak week for the
following seasons?
Last Season (1986-87) Present Season (1987-88)
1-7 1 -7
8 20 8 20
S21 49 21 -49
50 -99 50 99
100 499 100 499
Over 500 Over 500
If available, please provide exact If available, please provide exact
number of field workers in peakweek: number of field workers in peak week:


2. How many people are employed by your firm (farm) as permanent employees for this year,
1987-88 (exclude all temporary or seasonal employees)?
1 7 50 99
8 20 100 499
21 49 Over 500
If available, please provide the exact number of employees

3. What was the approximate percentage of male and female seasonal field workers employed
during your peak week of employment?

Male %
Female %

Total 100 %

4. What was the relative age distribution percentages for seasonal field workers employed
during your neak week of employment for 1987-88 season?

% Less then 20 years of age
S% 21 35 years of age
% 36 64 years of age
S% 65 years of age or older

100 % Total

If this information is not available, please give the approximate average age of all seasonal
farm field workers employed

5. During your peAk week of employment of seasonal field workers in 1987-88, what percentage
were Non-migrant, Intrastate, or Interstate migrants?

% Non-migrant or local residence
"% Intrastate migrants (within the state of
Florida across county lines)
"% Interstate migrants (across state lines)

100 % Total







6. During your neak week of employment 1987-88, what were the ethnic backgrounds of the
seasonal field workers employed?

Domestic Caucasians (Non Hispanic) %
Hispanics
Mexican %
Other Hispanic %
Blacks
American Black %
Haitian Black %
Other Foreign Black %
Other Workers (specify): %

Total 100%

7. What was the number of total man hours worked in the peak w k by seasonal field workers
for the following seasons?
Last Season (1986-87) Present Season (1987-88)
Peak Week Total Man Hours Peak Week Total Man Hours

Estimate the number of hours worked during the peak week for a single seasonal field
worker for the following seasons?
Last Season (1986-87) Present Season (1987-88)
Peak Week Hours Worked hrs/wk Peak Week Hours Worked hrs/wk

8. What was the number of days worked in the peak week by seasonal field workers for
1987-88? ___ days

9. During your ueak week of employment of seasonal field workers, what was the average
hourly wage or piece rate paid for various skill levels for the following seasons?

Last Season (1986-87) Pay Rate Present Season (1987-88) Pay Rate

HAND SKILLS HAND SKILLS

Planting/Potting etc. Planting/Potting etc.
Average Hourly Wage S /hr Average Hourly Wage $ /hr
Piece Rate (specify): unit Piece Rate (specify): __unit

Hand Harvest/Picking Hand Harvest/Picking
Average Hourly Wage S /hr Average Hourly Wage S /hr
Piece Rate (specify): unit Piece Rate (specify): unit

Other Hand Skills Specify Other Hand Skills Specify
Type Pay S Type Pay S_

MACHINE SKILLS MACHINE SKILLS

Tractor Driver Tractor Driver
Average Hourly Wage S /hr Average Hourly Wage S_ hhr

Other Machine Skills Specify Other Machine Skills Specify
Type Pay $S Type Pay S









10. What was the average hourly wage paid to nonseasonal employees for the year 1987-88?

Full time S Part time $

11. Do you think next season's (1988-89) wage rate (hourly and/or piece rate) for seasonal field
workers will be different from this seasons (1987-88) wage rate?

No
Yes

If yes, how would you compare the two seasons to each other?
Expect an increase in wage rate from 1987-88 to 1988-89
Expect a decrease in wage rate from 1987-88 to 1988-89

12. If you have indicated in Question 11 that you expect wage rates (hourly and/or piece rate)
to change for field workers please explain why?





13. If changes in farm labor supply and/or wage rate are occurring, what reasons can you give
to explain the situation?




14. How would you describe the supply of farm field workers needed for your peak week of
employment for the following seasons?
Last Season (1986-87)

Not Enough If so explain:

Adequate

Abundant If so explain:

Present season (1987-88)

Not Enough If so explain:

Adequate

Abundant If so explain:

Expected for Next Season (1988-89)

Not Enough If so explain:

Adequate

Abundant If so explain:








15. Do you think that the new immigration law is going to have an effect on the supply of
seasonal farm field workers?

Yes
No

16. If yes, in what way will it affect the supply of farm workers?

SIncrease the Supply
SDecrease the Supply

17. What percentage of seasonal field workers employed do you think are illegal
immigrants? %

18. Do you think your firm (company/farm) will have a problem in the future securing an
adequate supply of seasonal farm field workers?

Yes
No

If yes, briefly explain:



19. Which of the following activities, if any, would your firm (farm/company) undertake in order
to insure an adequate supply of seasonal farm labor in the future?

A. Increase wages paid to seasonal farm field workers.
No
Yes If yes, briefly explain:



B. Start or increase labor recruitment efforts.
SNo
SYes If yes, briefly explain:



C. Provide housing for workers and family.
SNo
SYes If yes, briefly explain:



D. Start or increase benefits (medical, insurance) to workers.
No
SYes If yes, briefly explain:








E. Shift to registered labor contractor.
No
SYes If yes, briefly explain:



F. Hire H-2A temporary foreign agricultural workers,
SNo
SYes If yes, briefly explain:



G. Join a cooperative that supplies harvest season field workers.
No
Yes If yes, briefly explain:___ __



H. Decrease the need for field labor by increasing labor saving devices such as mechanization.
No
SYes If yes, briefly explain:



I. Change Production to a crop requiring less labor.
SNo
Yes If yes, briefly explain:



J. Decrease production or quit farming.
No
SYes If yes, briefly explain:



K. Other activities please specify.






Please return as soon as possible to:

Dr. Leo C. Polopolus
1130 McCarty Hall
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611
904/392-1854





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