DIAL Ventures, an innovation initiative launched by Purdue University in partnership with venture builder High Alpha Innovation, is announcing the launch of its first startup company, Croft. Croft streamlines the H-2A visa program to save farmer and grower employers and their H-2A legal experts time and money. The Croft platform digitizes documents, automates manual workflow processes, and improves collaboration between farmers, growers, their H-2A legal experts, foreign workers, governmental agencies and all other organizations involved.
Labor shortage is one of the greatest challenges facing agriculture today. A recent nationwide poll shows that nearly 90% of farmers and growers find it difficult to fill agricultural jobs. As a result, the U.S. does not have enough people to plant, pick, harvest and manage the crops to feed the nation.
The H-2A visa program has alleviated some of the burden, but a huge supply and demand problem still exists between foreign workers and their farmer and grower employers — and the program is inherently complex and presents many challenges for everyone involved. Solving these challenges will make it easier for the program to grow rapidly.
"The H-2A Program is vital, but it is both expensive and cumbersome for farmers and growers, and it is extremely confusing and time-consuming for foreign workers," said Allan Gray, executive director of DIAL Ventures. "Growers just want to farm — they don’t want to be legal experts or the human resource department.”
Read the full press release here.