blueberries

berry pickers on strike
5:22 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

Berry Pickers on Strike Again in Burlington

Workers at Sakuma Brothers Farms say they make less than minimum wage on the rates they earn picking berries by the flat.
Bellamy Pailthorp Photo KPLU News

For the second time this month, about 200 berry pickers at a Skagit Valley farm have walked off the job.

The workers are striking over pay for the boxes of blueberries and strawberries they harvest at Sakuma Brothers Farms in Burlington. Many of those berries are sold to Haagen-Dazs for ice cream. The workers in question have been earning $3.50 per a flat of blueberries, which is about 12 pints. They say they can’t pick them fast enough to earn a fair wage.

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blueberry boom
10:44 am
Wed July 17, 2013

Nation’s Monster Blueberry Crop Smashes Prices for Farmers

Leonard Flores, 27, a forklift operator checks out the just picked fruit at Middleton Farms near Eltopia, Wash.
Anna King

North America’s blueberry crop is so substantial this year that prices are dropping, according to farmers. Thae boom follows about a decade of rapid expansion of new plantings.

The Northwest is one of the top producers of blueberries in the nation, and July is the peak of harvest. 

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