The biggest challenge for CEA, LABOR

The biggest challenge for CEA, LABOR

In July 2023, I posted the article The 2023 Controlled Environment Agriculture Market – How Are We Evolving? After fielding several questions and comments from industry professionals who I really respect, I feel the need for one (maybe two) follow-up articles. 

This article is first because I firmly believe labor is the biggest challenge we face today, as well as for the next 10 years in controlled environment agriculture (CEA), and in commercial horticulture and general production agriculture.

Victor Loaiza Mejia posted the following on LinkedIn on August 10, 2023: 

“I disagree with your assessment of the lack of ‘grower or production leadership’. Traditionally the greenhouse industry has had a legacy program (like Ivy League College) that benefited growers that come from outside the NAFTA countries. The local younger generation of growers and operators need opportunities to grow into these positions. They need mentoring and support.

“My vision of protected agriculture is more regional (USA, Canada, Mexico) than only thinking about the USA. As you mentioned in the article, the growing surface has decreased in the US but has increased in Mexico for example. The oldest greenhouse companies operating in the US and Canada are now some of the largest tomato marketers in the USA, purchasing greenhouse produce in Mexico at a very large scale, without really having ‘skin in the game.’ I see this as a big entry barrier for new companies based in the USA.

Continue reading on Urban Ag News.

Image by DCStudio on Freepik



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