YAKIMA, Wash. - Farm groups are planning to renew their push for immigration reform that includes a stable agricultural workforce.
Jon Wyss, a worker who handles labor issues for Gebbers Farms in Brewster, told Washington tree fruit growers that farm groups will have a new proposal for Congress as it considers immigration reform.
The proposal includes moving a federal guest-worker program from the Labor Department to the Agriculture Department. It also includes reducing the requirements for growers to recruit workers.
In the past, farmers have argued that the current program is too unmanageable and expensive to be of any real help.
Nancy Foster of the U.S. Apple Association reports that little else matters if growers can't prune, pick, pack, and process their fruit.