If you believe this incredibly biased article, all it’s doing is keeping kids in farm families from helping out with chores, but don’t believe it. The “farm kids doing chores” line has been used for decades to obfuscate what was really happening, which was that factory farms were taking advantage of the farm exception to child labor laws to use kids–kids who should have been in school–to pick vegetables. The reality is that your tomatoes may very well have been picked by a 12 year old migrant farm worker who didn’t have the power to negotiate a fair wage and should have been in school.
The farm chore loophole was used to exploit children in precisely the ways that the child labor laws were designed to stop. Don’t believe the spin that it’s about wholesome small family farms and rural children helping out with chores, it’s about you paying a few cents less per pound for tomatoes because they were picked by young children doing backbreaking labor in the hot sun all day long.
It’s about time the government stopped the exploitation and stepped in to protect children.