Monterey County Farm Bureau

Worker Protections

Advisory for Agricultural Worker Protection During COVID-19 Crisis

On March 20th, 2020, the Monterey County Agriculture Commissioner’s Office and Supervisors Luis Alejo and Chris Lopez along with Grower-Shipper Association of Central California, Monterey County Farm Bureau, Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association, Coastal Growers Association, and California Strawberry Commission released a model Advisory for Agriculture Worker Protection During COVID-19 Crisis for better protecting Agriculture and cannabis workers in Monterey County during the Coronavirus pandemic, becoming the first county in the state to do so for its Agriculture and cannabis industries.

On March 17th, 2020, Monterey County issued a “Shelter in Place” Order, and on March 19th California issued a “Stay at Home” Order in response to the coronavirus crisis.  Agriculture is included under the “essential businesses” exemptions on both orders, along with other categories of essential businesses. Knowing the critical role farmworkers play in Agriculture, local elected and Agriculture leaders quickly went to work to devise enhanced worker safety measures to ensure employee health and safety.

The Monterey County Agriculture Worker Protection Advisory Protocols are voluntary, but all these associations are supporting and encouraging their members to implement them at their worksites expeditiously.

The agricultural industry is enhancing its existing food safety guidelines to decrease the spread of acute respiratory illness and lower the impact of COVID-19 in their workplace. Through this advisory, we are identifying and communicating our objectives, which may include:

  • Preventing and reducing transmission among staff.
  • Protecting people who are at higher risk for adverse health complications
  • Maintaining business operations.
  • Minimizing adverse effects on other entities in their supply chains.

Protection guidelines from the CDC and public health departments are changing rapidly. The Agriculture community will be responsive to these changes and modify this Advisory as necessary. Further, this Advisory is not only for farmworkers but for all of the individuals involved in Agriculture’s supply chain.

This Advisory was revised as new information arrived from CDC, CDPH, or local health departments.  Monterey County Farm Bureau is participating in the County-wide collaborative initiated to reduce COVID-19 infections, the spread rate, and educate residents on the importance of accepting the vaccine when available to farmworkers and other essential individuals involved in the production of food crops.


COVID-19 Field Employee Tips Video – English

COVID-19 Field Employee Tips Video - Spanish