Indications of labor shortage in the Valley were evident during early spring 2021 when a local commercial asparagus farm could not find enough hands at harvest. Instead of letting asparagus go to waste, the farm owner responded by inviting the general public to pick asparagus for personal use – as much as one could pick! The incident was chronicled in a story by the Seattle Times reporter in this article, “‘Like science fiction,’ Seattle startup sends laser-equipped robots to zap weeds on farmland
“. More than 6,000 people, including mothers with their toddlers in tow, showed up over the course of one weekend. However, most of those people had no idea of what to expect and vowed to never step foot on a farm again!
Is this a sign of weather changes going forward? It could be, and if it is, we may likely expect an increase in produce costs in the future. On the weed control front, I wish something useful could be distilled out of kochia! That would surely take a huge bite in the large populations seen in the Treasure Valley!