Farmers Finding Success in Recruiting Workers from Foreign Countries

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Farmscape for October 25, 2021

Full Interview 9:37 Listen

A professional speaker and trainer with tWorks says farmers who have encountered challenges finding local sources of labor are finding success in recruiting workers from foreign countries. “50 shades of beige” will be among the topics discussed as part of Saskatchewan Pork Industry Symposium 2021 which will be held virtually via Zoom November 16 and 17. Tina Varughese, a professional speaker and trainer with tWorks, says farmers are increasing relying on workers from foreign countries, with the top source countries being Mexico, the Philippines, the UK, Ireland and the Ukraine.

Clip-Tina Varughese-tWorks:
I think generationally there’s a different face to who’s owning those farms. It used to be family run farms that would be handed down to children. Some of the kids now are not necessarily interested in taking over those farms to keep them going and, because of growth, farms are starting to outsource labor to foreign workers. I have also heard that sometimes it’s difficult to find local labor to work in such difficult jobs and yet they find foreign workers to be here by choice, they want to be working, highly skilled and very easy to train in the industry, so those are all positives. I think as well the industry has changed quite a bit in terms of technological advances in the industry. A lot of farmers are now using very high-tech pieces of equipment, so there’s been a lot of change within the industry that is driving a lot of these factors.

Varughese says many of the foreign workers that go into the smaller rural centers tend to stay and become part of that community and part of that economic growth. She says, when they become part of that community and feel part of it, they’re more willing to stay which will assist with the growth of those farms.

For more visit SaskPork.Com or Farmscape.Ca. Bruce Cochrane.

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