Contractors who supply workers to farmers say requirements of the Affordable Care Act and the immigration status of many of the workers create a Catch-22. Maguey Images/Getty Images hide caption

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Paul Lightfoot, CEO of BrightFarms, in his company's greenhouse in Lower Makefield Township, Pa. Dan Charles/NPR hide caption

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Las Cañadas is an ecological cooperative in Veracruz, Mexico that's working to sequester carbon and mitigate climate change while producing food, materials, chemicals and energy. Courtesy of Ricardo Romero/Chelsea Green Publishing hide caption

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The container yard at the Port of Lewiston, Idaho is virtually empty. Last year at this time there were 250 containers here, ready to carry farmer's crops down the Snake and Columbia Rivers to the Port of Portland and onto Asia and South America. Conrad Wilson /OPB hide caption

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Almonds hang from a branch at an orchard in Firebaugh, Calif. Despite the strain of prolonged drought, in 2014, California farms sold $54 billion worth of crops like almonds or grapes, and animal products like milk. Justin Sullivan/Getty Images hide caption

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Strawberry pickers in Watsonville, Calif. Many farmworkers in the state are out of work because of the severe drought. Those who do have a job are often working harder for less money. Lesley McClurg/For NPR hide caption

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A truckload of seed wheat and rye awaits planting near Orlando, Okla., back in 2012, when the price per bushel of wheat was 50 percent higher than it is now. Sue Ogrocki/AP hide caption

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Not only did the family trade their urban life for one in a beautiful valley surrounded by mountains and trees, but they also earn $300,000 a year. Ari Shapiro/NPR hide caption

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Thai and Burmese fishing boat workers sit inside a cell at the compound of a fishing company in Benjina, Indonesia on Nov. 22, 2014. The imprisoned men were considered slaves who might run away. Dita Alangkara/AP hide caption

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A worker picks clingstone peaches in Greece. Most of the country's farms are small and family owned. Production costs can be high, and Greek farmers have had trouble competing internationally. Konstantinos Tsakalidis/Bloomberg via Getty Images hide caption

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Workers with Ceria wait for a pipe-welding machine to finish connecting two sections of plastic irrigation pipe in Bario, Malaysia. The company has brought mechanized farming to the Kelabit Highlands. Jerry Redfern for NPR hide caption

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