California Agriculture: Sustainability, Farm Labor, Immigration, ALRB, and Cannabis

Event Date

Kalmanovitz Appellate Courtroom King Hall | UC Davis

This conference examines labor-related issues in California agriculture. Fruits and vegetables were two-thirds of the state’s $47 billion in farm sales in 2015, average agricultural employment has been increasing to 420,000, and most farm workers are aging unauthorized Mexican-born men who have settled in California with their families.



Four timely issues will be discussed. First is fresh-produce buyers requiring growers to abide by labor and other protocols that go beyond government regulations in order to sell commodities. Second is the four-S response of farmers to fewer new farm workers, including satisfying current workers, stretching them with mechanical aids, substituting machines for hand workers or switching crops, and supplementing with younger H-2A guest workers. Third is the enforcement of laws against unauthorized migration in the Trump Administration the effects on farm workers and agriculture. Fourth is a review of ALRB activities and the status of the state’s cannabis industry and its workforce. There is no charge to participate.

This conference is supported by the UC Ag Issues Center and the UCD Gifford Center and Migration Research Cluster, the Giannini, Rosenberg, and WKF foundations, and the ALRB.

For further information, contact Philip Martin (


8:15AM Check-in and Continental Breakfast

8:45AM Welcome

Philip Martin, UC Davis
Colin Carter, UC Davis

9:00AM Sustainability Certification Standards and Farm Labor Compliance

Chair: Daniel Sumner, UC Agricultural Issues Center and UC Davis
Nathan Smith, SureHarvest
Ernie Farley, Andrew and Williamson
Hector Lujan, Reiter Affiliated Companies
Kirk Wagner, Growers Express

10:30AM Break

10:45AM Farm Labor: Responding to Aging and Settling Workers

Chair: William Gould, Chairman Emeritus, ALRB
Philip Martin, UC Davis
Daniel Carroll, DOL
Daniel Costa, EPI
Fritz Roka, University of Florida
Don Villarejo, Davis

12:15PM Lunch

1:15PM Immigration and Farm Workers

Chair: Philip Martin, UC Davis
"What’s Next for Immigration," Kevin Johnson, UC Davis
"Immigration Policy and Farm Workers," Ed Kissam, WKF
Discussants: Amagda Perez (UC Davis), Cynthia Rice (CRLA), Cruz Reynoso (UC Davis)

2:45PM Break

3:00PM ALRB Issues and Cannabis

Chair: Genevieve Shiroma, ALRB
"Reflections on the ALRB," William Gould, Chairman Emeritus, ALRB
"ALRB Today," Julia Montgomery, ALRB GC
"The Economics of Cannabis," Daniel Sumner, UC Davis
"Farm Workers and Cannabis," Ed Blanco, ALRB
"Representing Cannabis Workers," Pete Maturino, UFCW

4:30PM Adjourn

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