Paid employment in agriculture: the rising proportion of seasonal contracts

Sophie Villaume, division Agriculture, Insee

In 2009, France's agricultural sector (including farming concerns and associated service firms) relied on an average 300,000 employment contracts daily (the number of employees was slightly lower, as some workers held several contracts simultaneously). More than one-third of the contracts were seasonal, and one non-seasonal contract in five was a fixed-term contract. The average number of seasonal fixed-term contracts was up from 2002, unlike open-ended contracts. Wine-growing and cereal farming accounted for 43% of agricultural contracts in 2009, including both seasonal and non-seasonal work. The fruit-growing sector hires more workers on seasonal contracts than other specialized sectors. Among contracts of non-managerial full-time employees, one-half of the open-ended contracts pay at least €10.70/hour versus at least €9.90/hour for one-half of fixed-term contracts (whether seasonal or not). Of the people who signed a non-seasonal fixed-term contract in agriculture in 2007, only one-third were still paid employees in the sector in 2009. Among workers under open-ended contracts signed in 2007, only one-half still held jobs in agriculture in 2008 and almost 40% in 2009.

Insee Première N° 1368
No 1368
Paru le : 16/09/2011