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Iowa pork producer: We need year-round immigrant workers

Pork Famers (AP)
Posted at 3:33 PM, Jul 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-22 16:33:07-04

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A top Iowa pork producer is pushing federal lawmakers to allow immigrant workers to stay on the job year-round.

The Des Moines Register reports that a spokeswoman for Iowa Select Farms told U.S. senators during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday that seasonal employment currently allowed under a federal visa program is insufficient to meet the industry's needs.

The spokeswoman, Jen Sorenson, testified that farmers and meatpacking plants are facing severe labor shortages and need immigrant workers to be able to work year-round.

Wednesday's hearing focused on the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, which would provide a pathway to legal status for more than 1 million undocumented farmworkers. The U.S. House passed the bill in March.

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