There were 785,000 hired workers on U.S. farms and ranches during the week of Jan. 11-17, 2009, up 2% from a year ago, according to the monthly USDA-NASS report on Farm Labor. Of these hired workers, 595,000 workers were hired directly by farm operators. Agricultural service employees on farms and ranches made up the remaining 190,000 workers.
Farm operators paid their hired workers an average wage of $10.93 per hour during the January 2009 reference week, up 12 cents from a year earlier. Field workers received an average of $9.96 per hour, up 29 cents from last January, while livestock workers earned $10.27 per hour compared with $10.18 a year earlier.
The field and livestock worker combined wage rate, at $10.08 per hour, was up 20 cents from last year. The number of hours worked averaged 38.3 hours for hired workers during the survey week, down fractionally from a year ago.
To read more on the regional breakdowns, follow this link to the full report on Farm Labor.
|Source: USDA/NASS January Farm Labor Report