AURORA, Colo. — The Colorado Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association (CFVGA) will host its 2nd Annual Produce Labor Conference, Dec. 1 at the Arapahoe County Fairgrounds in east Aurora. This conference will be an opportunity for all components of Colorado labor, including employers, employees, labor providers, labor service providers, labor-saving technology providers and others, to come to together to search for solutions to Colorado’s ag labor shortage.
“Colorado produce growers have been experiencing a shortage of qualified, willing workers for several decades, but the situation has become even more dire with tightening labor markets and passage of SB21-087 last spring increasing future payroll costs,” said Adrian Card, CFVGA founding Board member and chair of the conference committee. “This conference is aimed at pulling together all those who are related to the produce workforce in order to have transparent conversations and come up with viable solutions.”
The day will kick off with an overview of a 2020 ag employer survey, following by a panel, Unpacking the Agricultural Workers’ Rights Act, a bill passed by the Colorado General Assembly this past spring. The panel will include Micki Hackenberger and Lisa LaBriola, Axiom Politics, Dir. Scott Moss, Colorado Department of Labor & Employment and Hollis Glenn, Colorado Department of Agriculture. Moss and Glenn will provide attendees with an overview of the rules promulgated with passage of the bill (SB21-087). The panel will conclude with audience questions addressed to panel members.
Trends in U.S. Domestic and International Farm Worker Situation will be presented by Jason Resnick, Western Growers Association. Ag labor technologies aimed at reducing human labor will be displayed in a tech expo. In addition, attendees will be able to participate in break sessions on using H2-A as a small grower, Reducing the risk of farmworker injury and Ag Housing Solutions. The conference also will feature a Grower-Labor Provider “speed dating” session where growers and labor providers can meet and decide if they are a fit for one another.
The conference will close with a look at ag employee voices. A panel will discuss why they work in ag, what employers can do to keep them coming back and what they think of SB 21-087.
Check out the agenda, register and learn about exhibitor opportunities here: https://pheedloop.com/ProduceLabor/site/
The CFVGA is comprised of more than 250 members, including growers of all sizes and types of production throughout the state, as well as representatives of allied industries. The Colorado fruit and vegetable growing sector contributes nearly $485 million to Colorado at the farm gate and is multiplied as it goes through the distribution chain. Over 90,000 Colorado acres are in fruit and vegetable production.
— Colorado Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association