Buy Local Raspberries Pt 1

Buy Local Raspberries Pt 1

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. It seems BUY LOCAL, or at least American, gets a lot of lip service these days.

But, even before tariffs were making life more difficult for U.S. ag producers, the cost of doing business here was already boosting the price of U.S. goods over those grown in other countries.

But Washington Raspberry Commission director Henry Bierlink says they’ve got a consumer campaign …

BIERLINK … “One of our strategies is to kind of help people kind of connect the fact that if you want good labor laws and food safety laws and environmental laws, which I believe we all do, there is a cost to that. And, if we also want agriculture in this country, there’s going to have to be some changes somehow because you can’t have it all without paying the price.”

Bierlink says other countries don’t have to worry about regulations …

BIERLINK … “Which, nobody’s arguing that we shouldn’t. We need responsible labor laws, environmental laws, all those kinds of things, but they certainly put us at a competitive disadvantage with some of the imports where those laws are not relevant.”

But, he says, then there’s the wage discrepancy …

BIERLINK … “If you average it out, it’s closer to $20 around here and, I mean, if you look at what they’re really getting, not the minimum wage, but you know, I think this is the wake up call I think that needs to come to all of our consumers is that this isn’t just raspberries. This is any labor-dependent crop in the U.S.”

If supporting local growers is important to you, tune in tomorrow for more why it’s a good thing.

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