What are food and agriculture workers


Overview. Food workers and those occupations that are considered part of the food employment sector include production focused farmworkers, slaughterhouse and processing facility workers, distribution or warehouse workers, retail store workers, and service industry workers.


What does an agricultural worker do?

Agricultural workers maintain crops and tend livestock. They perform physical labor and operate machinery under the supervision of farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers. Agricultural equipment operators use a variety of farm equipment to plow and sow seeds, as well as to maintain and harvest crops.

How many agricultural workers are in the United States?

The National Center for Farmworker Health estimates that there are approximately 2.5-3 million agricultural workers in the United States. [1] These workers travel and work throughout the U.S., serving as the backbone for the trillion dollar agricultural industry. [2]

What are the different types of agricultural jobs?

Some animal breeders may consult with farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers about their livestock. Crop, nursery, and greenhouse farmworkers and laborers perform numerous tasks related to growing and harvesting grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and other crops.

What is the work schedule of agricultural workers?

Work Schedules. Many agricultural workers have seasonal work schedules. Seasonal workers typically work longer periods during planting or harvesting times or when animals must be sheltered and fed. Some agricultural workers, called migrant farmworkers, move from location to location as crops ripen.


What are the main sectors of agriculture?

The Food and Agriculture Sector has critical dependencies with many sectors, but particularly with the following: 1 Water and Wastewater Systems, for clean irrigation and processed water 2 Transportation Systems, for movement of products and livestock 3 Energy, to power the equipment needed for agriculture production and food processing 4 Chemical, for fertilizers and pesticides used in the production of crops

What is a food and agriculture sector specific plan?

The Food and Agriculture Sector-Specific Plan details how the National Infrastructure Protection Plan risk management framework is implemented within the context of the unique characteristics and risk landscape of the sector. Each Sector Risk Management Agency develops a sector-specific plan through a coordinated effort involving its public and private sector partners. The Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services are designated as the co-Sector Risk Management Agencies for the Food and Agriculture Sector.

Which agency is responsible for risk management in the food and agriculture sector?

The Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services are designated as the co-Sector Risk Management Agencies for the Food and Agriculture Sector.

What are the dependencies of agriculture?

The Food and Agriculture Sector has critical dependencies with many sectors, but particularly with the following: Water and Wastewater Systems, for clean irrigation and processed water. Transportation Systems, for movement of products and livestock. Energy, to power the equipment needed for agriculture production and food processing.

How do agricultural workers help the economy?

Agricultural workers support the $1.109 trillion agricultural industry in the U.S. [2] Some studies noted a rise in agricultural workers over the last decade, and the presence of agricultural workers increased the overall economic output of their agricultural regions. [4] Eliminating the agricultural workers or switching to less labor-intensive crops negatively impacts agricultural regions and reduces the number of jobs available to permanent local residents. [4] Research conducted on Michigan’s agricultural economy found that agricultural workers contributed over $23.3 million dollars to the state’s annual economy by enabling farmers to produce higher-value crops, after the deduction of agricultural workers’ wages and housing costs. [5] Strict immigration laws passed in several states have demonstrated the severe impacts of farm labor shortages. [6] A University of Georgia study found that House Bill 87, passed in April 2011, adversely affected the state’s agricultural output. Georgia lost over $181 million in less than a year due to increased labor shortages. [7]

How old are agricultural workers?

Agricultural workers in the United States have an average age of 38 years. 34 % are 45 years of age or older. 49 % are between 25 and 44. 11 % are between 20 and 24. 7% are between 14 and 19. The average level of completed education was 8th grade. 4 % had not completed any formal schooling.

What are the barriers to accessing health care for agricultural workers?

A study conducted in New York in 2007 found that poverty, frequent mobility, low literacy, language and cultural barriers impede agricultural workers’ access to social services and cost-effective primary health care. [27] The small percentage of agricultural workers who do take advantage of health services face more issues: a limited means of transportation, language and cultural barriers, no health coverage, cost of services, the lack of time-efficient healthcare delivery methods and the medical referral system. [28] For over 55 years, health centers have provided primary care services to agricultural workers via the federal Health Center Program. [29] Health centers are community-based and patient-directed organizations that serve populations with limited access to health care. These include low-income populations, the uninsured, those with limited English proficiency, agricultural workers, individuals and families experiencing homelessness, and those living in public housing. [30] Some Health Centers receive federal funds to provide health services to agricultural worker patients. In 2019, the Health and Resources Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reported that the health center program provided health services to 1,031,049 agricultural workers (including family members) as reported by all Community Health Centers; of which 903,842 received services from 175 centers with specific funds to help agricultural workers. [31] According to HRSA’s Health Center Data, the following are the most common diagnoses reported by Health Centers for this set of patients in 2019. [22] (See NCFH’s fact sheet on Farmworker Health for more detailed information about health issues among agricultural workers nationally.

Why are agricultural workers more challenged?

Because a worker’s benefits are state-dependent, agricultural workers are often more challenged by the qualifications and requirements of each state . Farmworker Justice compiled a chart of state-specific worker’s compensation coverage limitations for agricultural workers. [13] .

What is the Fair Labor Standards Act?

The Fair Labor Standards Act: First enacted in 1938, the FLSA has undergone many amendments; it establishes a minimum wage, overtime pay, record-keeping and child labor standards. [33] The agricultural industry is specifically exempted from the requirement for overtime pay, so agricultural employers are not required to pay employees time and a half for working more than 40 hours a week. [34] Small agricultural employers that do not meet a set threshold of labor hours are also exempted from the requirement to pay minimum wage. [34]

How much do agricultural workers contribute to Michigan’s economy?

Research conducted on Michigan’s agricultural economy found that agricultural workers contributed over $23.3 million dollars to the state’s annual economy by enabling farmers to produce higher-value crops, after the deduction of agricultural workers’ wages and housing costs. [5] .

How many years of farm experience do farmers have?

More than half (58%) of agricultural workers surveyed had more than 10 years of U.S. farm experience.

What is an agricultural worker?

Agricultural workers, including Farmworkers, and their support service and supply workers who are responsible for the planting, cultivating, growing, harvesting, and bringing to market any agricultural or horticultural commodity (including non-edible plants and flowers). This includes packing, storing, trasnport, …

What is a farm worker?

Farmworkers, any capacity and their support service and supply workers. > Raising, cultivating, harvesting, packing, storing, transport and delivery of any agricultural/horticultural commodity for human consumption > Workers involved in producing or harvesting field crops, including cannabis growers.

What is a worker in convenience store?

Worker in Convenience Store or Retail Store that sells food/beverage, any capacity

What is an animal agriculture worker?

Animal agriculture workers to include those employed in veterinary health; manufacturing and distribution of animal medical materials, animal vaccines, animal drugs, feed ingredients, feed, and bedding, etc.; transportation of live animals, animal medical materials; transportation of deceased animals for disposal; raising of animals for food; animal production operations; slaughter and packing plants and associated regulatory and government workforce

What is farm worker?

Farm workers to include those employed in animal food, feed, and ingredient production, packaging, and distribution; manufacturing, packaging, and distribution of veterinary drugs; truck delivery and transport; farm and fishery labor needed to produce our food supply domestically

What is the CISA list?

The federal government has taken a supporting role as state and local governments and private companies institute an evolving patchwork of responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. On March 19, 2020, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), operating under the Homeland Security Act of 2002, issued guidance and an accompanying list of “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.” CISA’s list is intended to promote the ability of essential workers to continue to work during periods of community restriction, access management, social distancing, and closure orders or directives.

What is the definition of an employee in the food industry?

Employees of companies engaged in the production of chemicals, medicines, vaccines, and other substances used by the food and agriculture industry , including pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, minerals, enrichments, and other agricultural production aids

Is agriculture on CISA list?

While agriculture workers are explicitly identified on CISA’s list of critical infrastructure workers, it is not clear how other arms of the federal government will support CISA’s efforts. For example, the Wall Street Journal and others have reported that the State Department has stopped processing visas in Mexico for seasonal workers to enter the U.S.

What are the industries of agriculture and food service?

The agriculture and food service sectors encompass a wide range of activities, including animal and crop production, manufacturing of food products, support services such as testing and inspections, and restaurants and retail sales. Food service workers have been some of the most visibly impacted by state stay-at-home orders as restaurants have been forced to close or adapt to takeout-only service. Agriculture and food production businesses and workers up the supply chain have faced their own challenges. From reports of significant supply chain issues forcing farmers to destroy crops and spill gallons of milk, demand for typical products farmers and production facilities would be sending to restaurants and schools is way down, while the demand for grocery-ready items has increased.

What is essential worker?

According to the U..S Department of Homeland Security, essential workers are those who conduct a range of operations and services that are typically essential to continue critical infrastructure operations. Critical infrastructure is a large, umbrella term encompassing sectors from energy to defense to agriculture.

How many states have essential worker orders?

Of the 43 states with essential worker orders or directives, 21 now defer to the federal definitions developed by the US. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). CISA’s guidance and sector-specific list, according to the agency’s website, are intended to support state and local governments in their identification of essential workers. The agency says, “promoting the ability of [critical workers] to continue to work during periods of community restriction, access management, social distancing or closure orders is crucial to community resilience and the continuity of essential functions.”

What is retail industry?

The retail industry is the second-largest employment sector in the United States, accounting for nearly 1 in 10 of all domestic workers. While salespersons, cashiers, stock clerks and first-line supervisors in brick-and-mortar stores are primary examples of retail workers, those involved in the facilitation and execution of e-commerce, such as delivery drivers and warehouse packers, are a growing segment of the sector’s workforce. According to recent research, four occupations comprise the bulk of the industry, constituting roughly 79% of all retail worker employment: retail salespersons (about 25%), drivers and sales workers (24%), cashiers (20%), and stock clerks and order fillers (11%).

How many retail workers are women?

Demographically, 40% of retail workers are women, although the gender distribution varies widely by occupation within the sector. Cashiers, who earn an average of $8.25 per hour, are predominantly women, whereas delivery drivers, who earn an average of $16.20, are predominantly men.

Why are retail occupations considered essential?

From keeping grocery store shelves stocked to delivering consumer goods, many occupations within retail are deemed essential due to the role they play in maintaining everything from food to personal security. For this reason, all states with available guidance have deemed occupations within the retail sector essential.

Is child care considered an essential worker?

Some states have also designated child care providers as “essential workers” so they are eligible for any supports or services offered by the state and are able to continue working to ensure essential workers in other critical industries can also work and meet the health and safety needs during the crisis.

What is essential worker?

This interim list identifies “ essential workers ” as those who conduct a range of operations and services in industries that are essential to ensure the continuity of critical functions in the United States (U.S.). Essential workers were originally described by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security …

What is essential healthcare worker?

Essential Healthcare Workers (1a):#N#All paid and unpaid persons serving in healthcare settings who have the potential for direct or indirect exposure to patients or infectious materials. This includes persons not directly involved in patient care, but potentially exposed to infectious agents while working in a healthcare setting

What is the G industry?

g This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in the collection, preparation, and delivery of food for individuals who are hungry or who have food insecurity. These establishments include community meal programs, social services, food banks, food pantries, mobile and non-mobile soup kitchens, and meal delivery programs. Note that people who work for establishments that provide individual and family services related to healthcare/public health, such as WIC clinics, SNAP clinics, mutual aid programs, and benefits access projects, may also be considered for higher prioritization under Phase 1a (e.g., NAICS 624190 Other Individual and Family Services).


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