Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 70

LABOR
Evaporating labor pool
US employers' most common
complaint across almost all sectors
is an inability to find workers.
The Coronavirus pandemic and
its aftereffects helped generate
this continuing problem for many
employers. Following the pandemic,
roughly 3 million fewer workers are
participating in the labor force than
in February 2020 and more than 10
million job openings exist with fewer
than 7 million unemployed workers to
fill them.
The reasons for the ongoing worker
shortage are varied. Some have not
returned to the workforce as the result
of the government financial assistance
received during the pandemic. It is
estimated that 68% of workers were
earning more on unemployment during
the pandemic than they made while
working, enabling some to add to
their savings. Other workers received
pandemic-related bonuses and wage
increases. Combined with increasing
home values and reduced mortgage
payments, many found a greater level
of financial security than before the
pandemic. Together these factors
permitted some workers to remain out
of the workforce longer than expected.
Some chose to leave the workplace
permanently. A substantial number of
workers 55 and older opted for early
retirement rather than a return to the
workplace. Among those workers
65 and over, there were 7% more
retirements than would otherwise have
been expected. The loss of these older,
experienced workers is especially
difficult because a sudden loss of
decades of institutional knowledge is
difficult to replace.
The loss of so many older workers
in the pandemic underscores the
primary reason for the anticipated
shortfall in the number of workers
moving forward. We have an aging
population and hence an aging
workforce, which can be explained by
declining birthrates. The birth rate in
1970 was 23 births per 1,000 people.
Today, it is 8 births per 1,000 people.
By 2035, adults 65 and older will
outnumber children under the age of 18
for the first time in history.
Other factors contributing to the
shortage of workers include laid off
workers who took themselves out of
the traditional workforce by choosing
to become self-employed. To the extent
that numbers are available, it appears
these self-employed workers exceed
2019 levels. Secondly, the frustrating
experiences of many workers during
the pandemic, including the stresses
of working in understaffed workplaces
operating under COVID protocols, the
stress of school closings and childcare
issues, and caring for elderly relatives
resulted in a greater focus by many on
work-life balance. Work-life balance
has long been a focus of millennials,
who comprise the majority of today's
workforce. The desire for flexibility
in their job to permit sufficient time
for family matters has caused some to
remain on the sidelines awaiting that
perfect job.
Relatedly, the labor participation
rate for women fell more than 3%
during the pandemic and remains
below the pre-pandemic level. In
many cases the initial exit from the
workplace of working mothers came
with the closure of schools and
childcare facilities. Where financial
conditions permitted, many formerly
working mothers made the decision
to stay home permanently. Finally, the
continued automation of the workplace
eliminates some jobs and creates jobs
for new skill sets that many workers
do not currently possess. Across
the developed world more than 10
million manufacturing jobs remain
vacant because of a skills gap. It will
take time to sufficiently train a more
modern workforce, but regardless,
automation of the workplace continues
in the meantime.
Considering all the factors that
impact the labor participation rate,
along with long-term trends that may
reduce the overall number of workers,
employers could be facing a permanent
struggle to find workers.
RICHARD D. ALANIZ | meatpoult r y@sos land.com
The loss of so many older workers in the
pandemic underscores the primary reason
for the anticipated shortfall in the number
of workers moving forward.
70 MEAT+POULTRY | 11.22 | www.meatpoultry.com
davit85 - stock.adobe.com
http://www.meatpoultry.com

Meat+Poultry - November 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat+Poultry - November 2022

Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - Intro
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - FCa
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - FCb
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 1
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 2
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 3
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 4
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 5
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 6
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 7
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 8
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 9
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 10
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 11
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 12
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 13
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 14
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 15
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 16
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 17
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 18
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 19
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 20
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 21
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 22
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 23
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 24
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 25
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 26
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 27
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 28
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 29
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 30
Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 31
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Meat+Poultry - November 2022 - 60
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https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-december-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-november-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-october-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/special-supplement-ground-beef-trends-technology-september-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-september-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-august-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-july-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-june-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/special-supplement-meat-alternative-trends-and-technology-may-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-may-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-april-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/special-supplement-bacon-trends-technology-march-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-march-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-february-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-january-2022
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/-meatpoultry-december-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-november-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-october-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/special-supplement-ground-meat-trends-technology-october-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-september-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-august-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-july-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-june-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-may-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/special-supplement-meat-alternatives-may-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-april-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/meatpoultry-march-2021
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/2021_02_01
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https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/2020_12_01
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https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/2019_07_11
https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/2019_06_01
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https://digital.meatpoultry.com/sosland/mp/2019_04_01
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https://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/mp/2018_02_01
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https://www.nxtbook.com/sosland/mp/2017_12_01
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