Ag Wages-Labor Higher and Holiday Ham Prices Up
**Both wages and the number of farm labor workers are up compared with a year ago.
A new USDA farm labor report indicates farm operators directly employed 809,000 workers during the week of October 6-12, up 3% from the same week last year.
According to thepacker.com, the report says farm operators paid their hired workers an average gross wage of $15.02 an hour during that same week, up 4% from a year ago, and field workers an average of $14.38 per hour, up 5%.
**With one holiday here and Christmas on the way, will consumers planning to serve up a ham think twice due to price?
Agweb.com reports, USDA data shows wholesale ham prices have almost doubled this year to 93.86 cents a pound as of November 20th .
The record in 2014 was $1.4368, about 57% higher than current levels.
Despite tariff barriers, China is still buying up U.S. pork.
**The American Farm Bureau Federation's 34th annual survey of classic items found on the Thanksgiving Day dinner table indicates the average cost of this year's feast for 10 is $48.91, less than $5.00 per person, and a 1-cent increase from last year.
AFBF Chief Economist, Dr. John Newton tells agrimarketing.com, the average cost of this year's
Thanksgiving dinner is essentially unchanged, following three years of decline.