NASS Publishes Farm Labor Report
Washington--The National Agricultural Statistics Service published its biannual Farm Labor report on Thursday. NASS interviewed nearly 12,000 farmers and ranchers across the U.S. to obtain information on the number of agricultural workers, hours worked and wage rates at the national and regional levels.
According to the report, the number of hired workers decreased nearly 5 percent, while wage rates increased almost 2 percent from last year. In the report’s reference period—the week of Jan. 8-14, 2012—there were 575,000 workers hired directly by farm operators. In that same time frame, hired workers were paid an average wage of $11.52 per hour.
The biggest increases came in the Corn Belt, which had the highest percentage of farm labor hires. According to the report, this was primarily driven by the need for livestock workers because of increased inventories.
The next NASS Labor Report will be published Nov. 15.