Idaho dairies dependent on undocumented workers

The director of Idaho’s Department of Agriculture has called for immigration reform noting the need to normalize the lives of undocumented workers in farming.

The dairy industry in Idaho accounts for one third of farm employment in the state. and 85 – 90% of hired dairy labor are immigrants. Many are undocumented. The 8,100 jobs on Idaho dairies statewide generate 3,700 jobs in dairy processing and 27,600 jobs in other businesses, according to research done by University of Idaho agricultural economists.

Immigrants make up all 48% of farm workers and 29% of cooks in Idaho.


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