Labor Practices

A pair of eyeglasses sitting on a book. (Copyright IStock)"Hired farmworkers make up less than 1 percent of all U.S. wage and salary workers, but they play an essential role in U.S. agriculture. Wages, salaries, and contract labor expenses represent roughly 17 percent of total variable farm costs and as much as 40 percent of costs in labor-intensive crops such as fruit, vegetables, and nursery products." Source: Economic Research Service. Find out more about farm labor and its role in sustainable food systems.

USDA. Economic Research Service.

ERS data and analysis on numbers and demographics for hired farmworkers in the U.S. employed in both metro and nonmetro areas.

American Agricultural Economics Association.

Immigrant workers are important to U.S. agriculture. The four articles in this set explore the impacts of immigrant workers, legal or illegal, on various aspects of U.S. agriculture, along with rural labor markets. (Choices: The Magazine of Food, Farm and Resource Issues, 1st Quarter 2007)

U.S. Department of Labor. Employment and Training Administration.

The survey "is an employment-based, random survey of the demographic, employment, and health characteristics of the U.S. crop labor force." Reports and data are based on Interviews are conducted during the growing seasons.

California Institute for Rural Studies.

"Work within this program area includes best practices manuals, toolkits for organizing, case studies, and research into farmworker communities. Specific topics include farmworker housing and transportation, fair labor practices on farms, indigenous population studies and farm labor management." Also see farm labor publications.