Immigration Reform Won't Save US Agriculture
Posted at 10:15 a.m. on Jan. 30
“Farmers have long grumbled about a shortage of labor, and they’ve asked for policies that make it easier to hire foreign workers from places like Mexico. But looser immigration laws may not be able to keep our food cheap forever,” according to Brad Plumer, highlighting a new report in the Journal for Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy.
“That’s because Mexico is getting richer and can no longer supply as many rural farm workers to the United States… In 2006, 77 percent of all agricultural workers in the United States were foreign-born… Not only are Mexican workers shifting into other sectors like construction, but Mexico’s own farms are increasing wages. That means U.S. farms will have to pay higher and higher wages to attract a dwindling pool of available Mexican farm workers.”