January 2019 - 6

Worker relations keep production buzzing
By Gary Pullano
Managing Editor
Everything a grower can do to
control yield - and secure profits -
that emerges with a stellar crop is put
in the mix, said California strawberry
grower Jacqueline Vazquez-Celaya.
Some situations " happen naturally to
control that. "
The North American Strawberry
Growers Association's Summer
Tour visit to Sundance Berry Farms
coincided with one of those " natural "
occurrences that put the harvest
operations into a delay - the first
day of school for children of the
employees, which meant 60 mothers
took time off to attend to their family's
needs, with 40 not returning that day.
" Something so simple as that, and we're
literally missing 60 moms, " VazquezCelaya
said. " The mom in me thinks that's
awesome that they are going to be taking
their kids to the first day of school. But
the mom of me who is here, wish they
were here, too. I certainly do understand.
" The raspberries and blackberries
came in slow, taking away some of
our workers, and with the first day of
school, we're dealing with decreasing
labor almost every week. "
Vazquez-Celaya touched on a
number of approaches Sundance
Farms uses to maintain a reliable and
satisfied workforce, including child
California strawberry grower Jacqueline
Vazquez-Celaya said the H-2A program
is working well for Sundance Berry
Farms.
care arrangements and other familyfriendly
considerations.
" I think we are pretty unique in the
way we handle our labor, " she said. " We
are exclusive partners with United Way.
Every one of our workers who have
children receive a backpack with school
supplies. Every single year, every child
of our workers gets a brand new jacket,
also donated by another organization. "
Sixty workers who happen to be mothers
took at least part of the day off when their
children returned to school. Photos: Gary
Pullano.
The company works with the
Special Supplemental Nutrition
Program for Women, Infants, and
Children (WIC) that provides federal
grants to states for supplemental
foods, health care referrals, and
nutrition education for low-income
pregnant, breastfeeding, and nonbreastfeeding
postpartum women, and
to infants and children up to age five
who are found to be at nutritional risk.
" All of our returning moms have a
very structured program in place to
be able to provide food and care to
their children while they are working, "
Vazquez-Celaya said. " We work with
them to provide transportation for
medical appointments. "
Making sure transportation is
available for that purpose keeps
workers in the field on a more
predictable basis.
" Previously, our workers would go
to a doctor's appointment and take
the rest of the day off. Because most
of our employees carpool, and the
driver happened to be the one with
an appointment, then we would be
out five or six workers for that day. So
providing transportation for doctors'
appointments has worked out really
great because they bring them back
here to work. "
Sundance Farms retrofitted a trailer
on the property, filling it with home
goods and clothing that can be accessed
by workers and their families to meet
immediate living needs.
" We also raffle off 10 tickets a day
to allow people to go in and get things
they need for their lives. Things like that
we hope are the reason why people want
to work here. We have H-2A, but we
have over 400 acres and we only have
See WORKERS, page 8
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January 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of January 2019

January 2019 - 1
January 2019 - 2
January 2019 - 3
January 2019 - 4
January 2019 - 5
January 2019 - 6
January 2019 - 7
January 2019 - 8
January 2019 - 9
January 2019 - 10
January 2019 - 11
January 2019 - 12
January 2019 - 13
January 2019 - 14
January 2019 - 15
January 2019 - 16
January 2019 - 17
January 2019 - 18
January 2019 - 19
January 2019 - 20
January 2019 - 21
January 2019 - 22
January 2019 - 23
January 2019 - 24
January 2019 - 25
January 2019 - 26
January 2019 - 27
January 2019 - 28
January 2019 - 29
January 2019 - 30
January 2019 - 31
January 2019 - 32
January 2019 - 33
January 2019 - 34
January 2019 - 35
January 2019 - 36
January 2019 - 37
January 2019 - 38
January 2019 - 39
January 2019 - 40
January 2019 - 41
January 2019 - 42
January 2019 - 43
January 2019 - 44
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/march-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/february-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/vgn-digital-seed-guide-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/january-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/buyers-guide-2024
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/december-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/november-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/september-october-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/july-august
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/may-june-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/april-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/march-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/vgn-digital-seed-guide-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/february-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/january-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/december-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/buyers-guide-2023
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/november-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/september-october-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/august-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/july-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/june-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/may-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/march-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/february-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/seedguide-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/buyersguide-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/january-2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/december-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/november-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/october-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/september-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/august-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/july-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/june-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/may-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/april-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/march-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/february-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/seedguide-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/buyersguide-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/january-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/december-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/november-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/october-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/september-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/august-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/july-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/june-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/may-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/april-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/march-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/february-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/buyersguide-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/january-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/december-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/november-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/october-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/september-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/august-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/july-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/june-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/may-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/april-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/march-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/february-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/buyersguide-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/greatamericanmediaservices/VGN/january-2019
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