Annals of the agricultural and environmental medicine

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Farm wife” may not always be an acceptable term, as women also are principal operators or joint prin­ cipal operators. , just as an adult would. 2 Principal Operator Approximately 70% of the principal operators of family farms in developed countries are male. However, the percentage of women principal operators has been growing over the past two dec­ ades. In most operations, the principal operator 19 puts in the majority of hours of work on the farm and they typically are older than the general mean of the workforce in their country.

5 million migrant and seasonal workers; about 500,000 of these are from outside the EU. Farm operators in the United States hire (at some time during a year) about 317,750 (2012 data) foreign‐born migrant and seasonal workers (69, 71). In North America, migrant and seasonal workers make up nearly a quarter of the agricultural workforce. Many of these workers have found more permanent employ­ ment in larger industrial‐style farms and have or are in the process of “settling out” in the community.

Existing in the beginning as a research institute, in 1974 a training program in agricultural medicine was initiated for healthcare professional students and Chapter 1 Introduction and Overview graduate students (21). Two international profes­ sional organizations further the professional field of agricultural medicine. The International Association of Agricultural Medicine and Rural Health, founded in 1961 at Tours, France (8, 22), is a multi‐professional group of healthcare practitioners, health and safety scientists, and agriculturalists who aim to identify and control health and environmental problems in rural and agricultural communities.

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