Farmers fear migrant labor shortage at harvest time

May 21, 2013

It’s harvest time in parts of Michigan, and farmers along Lake Michigan are starting to bring in their asparagus crop.  The cherry harvest will follow by early July.  Growers are confident this season will be better than 2012, when an early warm-up followed by a quick killing frost destroyed much of the fruit crop.  Last year’s scenario also created another problem: many of the migrant laborers who traditionally arrive here for seasonal work did not come to Michigan.  Now, though the weather may be better, farmers fear a similar labor shortage could happen again this year.  

Current State’s Kevin Lavery reports.

After last year's devastating freeze, asparagus farmers and others in West Michigan fear a possible shortage of migrant laborers to work the harvest.
Credit Jeremy Nagel / Michigan Farm Bureau