At trade shows, conferences and in casual conversation, labor is often a topic of interest. We see a slight increase in the average number of seasonal and year-round employees at each operation this year, with more than half of respondents increasing hourly rates, and slightly more than a quarter increasing annual salaries. About a third in each category reported neither increasing or decreasing pay.

41% say that they’re not hiring because they don’t need additional labor, but most of those who are hiring find it to be a challenge to fill those job openings. 32% reported that there is “insufficient available qualified labor in the market.” However, more than half of growers say they’re not taking any actions to attract in younger professionals, so they may be missing out on an opportunity for labor in that demographic. The most popular strategy for attracting younger professionals is using social media (23%), an area that approximately that same number of growers wants to improve overall at their business.