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October 2018, Volume 24, Number 4

Rural America

California: Fires, Poverty
California had its worst fire season in 2018 in a decade; 14,000 firefighters were fighting 16 major fires in August 2018. The Mendocino Complex

Meat and Migrants
Chicken processor Case Farms reportedly needs 3,200 workers to staff its four plants and support operations. Case says that two-thirds of its hourly

Labor, H-1B
The US added 134,000 jobs in September 2018 and the unemployment rate fell to 3.7 percent, the lowest rate since 1969. Average hourly earnings rose

Farm Workers

California: Travel, Housing
California Rural Legal Assistance sued several employers who bus their workers from employer-provided housing to the fields, alleging that the

Florida, Southeast
Green Bean Packers of Florida City in August 2018 agreed to pay $1 million in overtime wages to 351 employees. Owner Thomas M. Torbert owned several

Midwest, Northeast, Northwest
Virginia. Newport News-based Casey's Seafoods was accused in August 2018 of mixing cheaper imported crab from Brazil and China with 400,000 pounds of

UFW, ALRB, Unions
The United Farm Workers union announced that Secretary-Treasurer Teresa Romero, age 60, would replace Arturo Rodriguez as president on December 20,


ACS, Wall, Public Charge
American Community Survey data released by the Census in September 2018 found that 44.5 million or 13.7 percent of US residents were born abroad in

DHS: Border, Removals, Asylum
Border. DHS apprehended 31,300 foreigners just inside the US border in July 2018, about the same as in June 2018 but down from 40,000 in May 2018.

H-2A, H-2B, H-2C
The US Department of Labor certified 193,600 farm jobs to be filled with H-2A workers during the first three quarters of FY18. DOL certified 200,000

Nafta, Canada, Mexico
Mexico and the US agreed on a revision of NAFTA in August 2018. The new agreement increases local content requirements for autos that can trade

Europe, Asia
The EU committed E858 billion or almost $1 trillion to aid regions whose per capita incomes are below 90 percent of the EU average. However,

Migration, Slavery, Poverty
The world is projected to add 2.2 billon people by 2050, including 1.3 billion in Africa. Many of these Africans may seek to emigrate, especially to


Food Spending 2017
[url=]The US Bureau of Labor Statistic's Consumer Expenditure Survey[/url] reported 130 million US "consumer units" or households in 2017.

California Agriculture
California's farm sales were over $50 billion in 2017, making them 13 percent of US farm sales. The leading commodities were dairy products worth

US Farm Bill
Congress failed to approve a five-year farm bill before the 2014 law expired September 30, 2018. Both the House and Senate approved farm bills in

Wine, Food
California harvested four million tons of wine grapes from 600,000 acres in 2018, an average yield of 6.6 tons an acre. US households spent an

Climate Change
Industrial countries in 2009 pledged to provide $100 billion a year by 2020 to help the world's poorest countries cope with climate change, but few

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