NEWS

Necessary boost to labor force

These stories are just examples of the many told by immigrants who have arrived here since the early 1990s. «Immigrants met the demand for labor. In fact, 25-35 percent of farm work today is done by economic immigrants,» said Haralambos Kassimis, professor of agricultural sociology at the Athens Agricultural University. He said the overwhelming majority of foreign farm workers (65-70 percent) are Albanians, followed by Bulgarians (10 percent) and then Pakistanis, Ukrainians, Georgians and Indians. About 70 percent of Greek farmers employ immigrants who, he said, have contributed to a new distribution of labor among Greek farming families, allowing women to return to the home and the men being able to give up hard labor in order to better organize and market the produce. The children have either been able to seek other work in the farming sector or move to another.