Without backpackers to pick them, crops rot by the ton in Australia

Without backpackers to pick them, crops rot by the ton in Australia

The Straits Times - Asia·2021-03-03 15:09

SHEPPARTON (NYTIMES) - Peter Hall ran a hand over the Gala apples sitting in a wooden crate on his orchard in southeastern Australia, lamenting the yellow tinge of fruit that would ideally be crisp red and green.

With the borders closed to the backpackers who do much of the country's farm labor, Hall was short 15 workers. That had left him racing against the clock. Just a couple of extra days on the tree, and apples can be relegated to low-profit juice.

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