WEST GROVE, Pa. — The Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce is hosting the region’s first Job Fair of its kind Sept. 29 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at their headquarters in West Grove, Pa., to fill a diverse range of jobs in the mushroom industry, including machine operators, supervisors, packers and administrative roles. Employers invited to exhibit are looking for job applicants of all skill levels with available part-time and full-time positions, many of which offer benefits and flexible hours.
“The mushroom industry could easily hire hundreds of people by the end of 2017,” said Chris Alonzo, President of Pietro Industries, one of the larger mushroom growers in the region. “People may not be aware that the mushroom industry has been paying wages exceeding the minimum wage for over two decades.”
The Job Fair is an initiative of the Mushroom/Ag Labor Crisis Task Force, consisting of business and community leaders from around the region. The group formed because of the existing scarcity of labor in the mushroom industry, leaving a wide range of job openings immediately available throughout one of Chester County’s most important industries.
“When we realized how serious the labor shortage is, we knew we needed to do something to help our mushroom growers. They play such an important role in our community and local economy,” said Cheryl B. Kuhn, President and CEO of the Southern Chester County Chamber of Commerce.
Applicants are welcome to bring a resume to the job fair but many positions do not require one. Offers may be made on the spot and bilingual support will be onsite.
The mushroom industry accounts for over 6,000 jobs in Chester County and contributes an estimated $2.17 billion to the local economy, according to a 2008 Penn State study.
— Penn State Extension – Chester County