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Labor Woes

Jennifer Polanz

I wish I had better news to report, but based on a recent survey collaboration between AmericanHort, University of California—Davis and Michigan State University, labor issues continue to be a struggle for greenhouse and nursery growers of all types.

The 2022 Greenhouse & Nursery Labor Employment survey showed only about a third of growers were able to find the workers they needed for production in 2021. More than 60% said COVID caused them to experience additional labor shortages in 2021, too.

When asked if they still experienced shortages in 2022, 42% said they hired more workers than the previous year, about 38% said they hired about the same and 19% said they hired fewer workers. To combat the shortages of labor, 35% of respondents said they used H-2A visa workers, with 18% saying it was their first year using the program. You can read the full report, which is free with registration at

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