Mushroom Production Endangered by ICE Crackdown

Kennett Square drops a giant mushroom every year on New Year's Eve.

Kennett Square, Pa. is the center of mushroom farming in the United States. The surrounding area grows half of all mushrooms harvested nationwide every year. The harvest is down in recent months because the labor supply has collapsed. Recent ICE raids have stopped immigrants from moving to the Mushroom Capital. And while mushroom workers earn more than 50% above minimum wage, few native-born workers have come forward to take the vacated jobs.

Immigrants have begun leaving the Kennett Square area because they see it as a dangerous hotbed of ICE enforcement. Production has already slipped by 2% as the labor force has declined. With talk of criminalization of undocumented immigration underway in Congress, immigrants have begun heading back to Latin America.







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