The Value of Youth Labor in the Fields

Keith Wilson, owner and operator of King Fresh Produce told his three sons early on that they could earn money working and contributing to the operations of the King Fresh Produce, the family business. Initially the boys thought their contribution would start in the office; filing, running errands, and doing other tasks, however, their father said no. According to Keith, to fully understand the business it starts in the field–working the dirt, planting, growing the crop, and harvesting. The sons were told “Field work begins in the morning so be at there at 5:30 AM tomorrow morning.” Keith told them to not forget a hat and to wear a long sleeve shirt to not get sun burned.

“Working in the fields helped me learn the value of a dollar. It makes me think if I buy something it took me this many hours to earn what I am purchasing.” Zachary Wilson, 15 years old said.

Working in the fields can be overwhelming. These young men have to wake up early in the morning since it is over 90 degrees by 10 or 11 AM.  After working in the fields for King Fresh for two summers now, Zachary is interested in working in other parts of the company.

“Working in the fields makes me realize how much an education is worth. I need to go to college because I do not want to limit myself to a manual labor job. I love working outside but having to crawl into a grape vineyard doesn’t sound appealing to me to do for the rest of my life.” Brenden Wilson, 16 years old said.

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Adolescents understand that the jobs available today if only receiving a high school degree are likely to be filling orders, manual labor, and moving boxes.  More and more teens believe that receiving a bachelor’s degree is the first step in moving up in the social and economic ladder.

This generation sees education in a different light compared to the older generation who decided to go to work right out of high school. It seems necessary to earn a higher education to open the door to more prestigious jobs and higher earnings. The focus on earning a higher education’s provides our generation with a feeling of security.

Working in the fields at King Fresh Produce as  young adults has been a beneficial experience for Brenden and Zachary. They enjoy seeing their projects through and visualizing the positive effects they have on the company. They realize the small things they are accomplishing can have a huge effect on the company. They will carry the lessons they learned in the field with them throughout their life and never forget their summers spent in the fields.

-Paige Wilson

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10 Things To Do This July

Mid-summer never felt so hot with these fresh ideas for your home!

The flowers are in-bloom, the BBQ is fired up and your social calendar is booked with one backyard party after another. Make the most of the season with these simple suggestions!

1 Clean the BBQ
Often neglected, the BBQ can be a breeding ground for bacteria and waste. Depending on how often it gets used, your grill should be cleaned every time you cook on it and come July, it’s in major need of some TLC. Roll up your sleeves and grab a steel wire brush to work out all the grease and food particles that reside in the grates, under the burners and on the lid. The best tip? Clean right after you’ve used the BBQ when it is still mildly warm. It will make your life a lot easier!

2 Indulge in fresh foliage
Time to take advantage of all that “pre” season gardening you did in March! Stroll through your garden and pick flowers for a beautiful arrangement in your home. Since you will be saving on the expense of purchasing in a flower shop, adorn every room with some of your favorite blooms.

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3 Bring summer in
If you skipped out on spring cleaning this year — as we all tend to do from time to time! — clean the windows in your home. Don’t try to do it on your own or else it will be September before you know it. Invest in a professional service for a one-day stint. You’ll be amazed at the results.

4 Lighten up
Summers means heat and humidity, so contemplate making minor changes to your decor that will make your surroundings more comfortable. Change your bed linens from winter flannels to airy cotton blends or silks. Do your duty for the environment and give the air conditioning a break by buying a few stylish fans to place in and around your house.

5 Camp out
Whether you have a family or are part of a cozy couple, take a mini-vacation … in your own backyard. Pitch a tent, grab your sleeping bags and light your tiki torches. Summer only lasts three months so enjoy the environment around you and take advantage of sleeping under the stars!

6 Host a Japanese-themed tea party
Get in touch with your inner Zen and host a beautiful outdoor tea party. The key is to keep it simple and clean and to surround yourself with the four elements of nature. Decorate the table with colorful stones, elegant fresh orchids, and tiny tea candles. Place a trickling fountain nearby, serve green tea in pretty cups and watch your guests soak up the tranquility.

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7 Fly high
Take advantage of the warm breeze and sunny skies by planning a trip to your local park to fly a kite with your family. Pack a picnic lunch and you have the perfect way to spend a lazy Sunday afternoon.
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8 Road tripping
As soon as the weather warms, farmers markets and fruit stands pop up virtually everywhere in the city and in the suburbs. Traditionally only open for a limited run, jump on your bike (or yes, into your car if need be) and discover these hidden gems.

9 Going, going, gone
Even if vintage chic isn’t your exactly decor mantra, garage sales are just a fun way to explore your neighborhood on a weekend. Don’t knock it until you try it; you really never know what you may find.

10 Cocktail connoisseur
Backyard soirees are a dime a dozen come this time of year, so next time you host, try something different by having a cocktail pot-luck (with hors d’oeuvres, naturally). Invite a group of friends to create a new, season-themed drink (alcoholic or non) and have a judging panel choose the ultimate sipper. Remember, the summer is all about letting loose and having some fun. Don’t take it too seriously!

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