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Cost of Tomatoes goes to 17 dollars a pound

Discussion in 'Politics, Elections & Legislation' started by g7777777, Oct 21, 2011.

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  1. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    This is an interesting comparison-- union leaders and others say immigrants (legal or illegal) are taking American jobs.

    We have seen this just isnt true in the meat packing and dairy industries- native born americans just wont take those jobs for what they pay. One claim is that they are dirty jobs. The argument is that if there were no immigrant blood in the US than those jobs would pay much more than 11-17 dollars an hour that they now pay. 17 dollars an hour with no overtime is just short of $40,000 a year.

    Well a recent article talked about tomatoes and Alabama - good clean work

    a quote but read the entire article posted above


    A crew of four Hispanics can earn about $150 each by picking 250-300 boxes of tomatoes in a day, said Jerry Spencer, of Grow Alabama, which purchases and sells locally owned produce. A crew of 25 Americans recently picked 200 boxes — giving them each $24 for the day.


    "It may make sense for some to sit on the couch. Unemployment benefits provide up to $265 a week while a minimum wage job, at $7.25 an hour for 40 hours, brings in $290.

    Spencer said the Americans he has linked up with farmers are not physically fit and do not work fast enough."

    The math is easy- to pay the american workers for equivilent work you would need 10 times as many workers and tomatoes would cost about $17.90 a pound stores.

    hmmmmm

    Who is going to pay 17.90 a pound for tomatoes- or 34 dollars a pound for hamburger or 14 dollars for a gallon of milk?

    That doesnt take into account mandatory health coverage fees that would be required for 10 times as many workers--- heck those prices might end up being tomatores at 40 dollars a pound- ground beef at 70 and milk at 30 dollars a gallon

    That is without even considering the problems of turnover and workplace injury claims.

    Something is wrong in the schools and some homes if we cant compete even inside the borders of our own county

    And it isnt that we dont pay enough.

    We are used to big government and unions arguing to spend money that american small buisnesses and corporations dont have. Heck they are arguing to spend money that individuals citizens dont have.

    Regards from Iowa

    Gene
     
  2. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

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    It's a lie! Experienced workers are always faster at manual labor than inexperienced. last time I picked tomatoes i think i did about 15 boxes in about 3 1/2 hrs. Now I'm close to 50 yrs old how much faster would a younger individual do. Even at my slow pace I'd do 30 boxes a day which is about 1/2 what the farmers are getting out of their migrant help. Remember I don't pick tomatoes for a living but I think that the work production argument is false. The real reason that you can't get American workers to do migrant work is housing and housing costs.
    Joe
     
  3. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    Joe- maybe someone taught you to work harder than those workers profiled in the article or maybe it was born into you?

    Have you ever considered you might not be the typical american worker of today?

    regards from Iowa

    Gene
     
  4. 391 shooter

    391 shooter Well-Known Member

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    Beleive me, the prices you see in the store are not what the farmers are getting, not even close.

    Between the Middle men and the spoilage % added that is what you see.

    The Brokers make the most of any of them. They get product A to Grocery distribution and they are finished.

    But, without the Brokers, a lot of stuff would just plain rot in the field.

    IMHO, Produce Brokers are likened to Investment Bankers.
     
  5. gun fitter

    gun fitter TS Member

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    Gene thank you. Your probably right but I think they were profiling an inexperienced work force and comparing them to workers who had done that kind of work their whole lives.
    Joe

    By the way you would never get me to do that kind of work 6-7 day work weeks 10- 12 hrs a day for 6-8 months straight unless I was starving.
     
  6. halfmile

    halfmile Well-Known Member

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    Gene, don't troll until you get a course from one of the masters on this site.

    You present way too much misinformation.

    HM
     
  7. 320090T

    320090T Well-Known Member

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    How big is the box?
     
  8. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like the packing houses in old Chicago about 1900. Bring in new immigrants that work for less to replace the old immigrants. It's nothing new. They found out if you and your family are starving you'll work for anything. All these farmers in Alabama have are slave-wage earners.
     
  9. Brian in Oregon

    Brian in Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Now come up with some stats for illegal alien roofers, carpenters, blacktop pavers, concrete finishers, painters, lawn maintc, fence installers, and all the other jobs they supposedly aren't taking from Americans, but are.

    And, a company in Oregon got a bunch of Stimulus money to hire work crews. So who did they hire? They brought in workers from overseas.
     
  10. JerryP

    JerryP Active Member

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    I agree with gun fitter, the article is BS.

    "A crew of 25 Americans recently picked 200 boxes"

    We are led to believe that is typical when it may be an isolated event.
     
  11. cnsane

    cnsane Member

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    $17 x 2000 hours is $34,000. In who's opinion and bookkeeping is that "just short of $40,000". That "just short" part would buy most people a brand new trap O/U. If this fallacious comparison were to "spin" any faster, centrifugal force would tear it apart quicker than real world statistics. Six grand ain't just short of $h!+ in most people's budgets.
     
  12. JerryP

    JerryP Active Member

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    Americans aren't built for picking tomatoes, too tall.
     
  13. shot410ga

    shot410ga Well-Known Member

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    Why pick tomatoes when you can collect money from the USA for doing nothing? What would happen if the welfare department required it's recipients to pick tomatoes before they got their check or food stamps? Like, one must bring in a receipt from the farmer that you picked "X" number of tomatoes. Time and speed in the field wouldn't be a factor just numbers. How long do you think the average welfare recipient would continue to collect?
     
  14. rpeerless

    rpeerless Well-Known Member

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    My concern is how foreign nationals that commit crimes on US soil figure into the statistics from which legislation is conceived.

    Crimes committed on US soil by foreign nationals should be tallied separately and should not be influencing legislation such as gun legislation that directly or indirectly effects American Second Amendment rights.

    This is especially important when today's US real estate market reflects the 88 billion that foreign investors have spent last year in buying US properties (at a discount, I must add, thanks to Obama's economic policies.)

    On second thought, should I have said foreign nationals or foreign occupiers or foreign what have yous?
     
  15. porky

    porky TS Member

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    I grew over 3000 pounds of tomatoes tis year and gave them all to Food Pantry's and the City Mission. I coould have been rich by Gene's numbers or at least have a leg up on the heat bill this winter.
     
  16. rpeerless

    rpeerless Well-Known Member

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    Got a high yield from a dozen or so plants and I picked them as they ripened.
    Can't imagine 3000 pounds of fresh delicious tomatoes but I'm sure they were appreciated by one and all that received them.

    Hope you didn't short yourself with the estimated cost of oil going up this year.
     
  17. g7777777

    g7777777 TS Supporters TS Supporters

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    There are 52 weeks in a year btw - not 50 so that is actually $35,360. Just short of 40,000 or a lot closer to 40,000 than making nothing and unemployed.

    It amazes me the people that sneer at making $17 dollars an hour.

    Regards from Iowa

    Gene
     
  18. rpeerless

    rpeerless Well-Known Member

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    GN7777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777etc.
    The only people that I've seen sneer at $17.00 an hour are the foreign nationals who come to America thinking the streets are paved with gold.
     
  19. Traders

    Traders Well-Known Member

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    I think we all understand that employers' hire illegals because they work cheaper. And, the difference between what the illegal gets paid and what a legal would get paid is a subsidy to the US economy. As we tighten illegal immigration, it removes the subsidy and "stuff" cost more. It really doesn't make any difference whether its tomatoes or roofing.
     
  20. jagrdawger

    jagrdawger TS Member

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    If you look at the history of packing plants in Iowa it went something like this:

    First they had American citizens working there who were local.

    Then they would sell to another meat packer who would fire everyone. The new plant would then open with all new employees which were primarily illegals. The excuse was Americans did not want to do that work (funny thing is it was all Americans that they had to fire).

    Then the practice became hire the illegal for 88-89 days, fire him for some reason before his probationary period ended, then give him a (insert number here) chance for 88-89 more days, fire him for some reason,...........

    It was never about who would not do the work, it was about profit margin! And those people who live in very unsanitary conditions touch many foods that we eat in their entirety and raw.
     
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