Sabor Farms' radish patch represents a revolution in how America pulls food from the land. The young men on their knees are working alongside technology unseen even 10 years ago. To hear more audio stories from publications like The New York Times, download Audm for iPhone or Android.

Radishes are placed on a conveyor belt within arm’s reach, which carries them through a cold wash and delivers them to be packed into crates and delivered for distribution in a refrigerated truck. The other change is more subtle, but no less revolutionary. Crouched behind what looks like a tractor retrofitted with a packing plant, they place bunches of radishes on a belt.

The decline in the supply of young illegal immigrants from Mexico has sent farmers scrambling. They are bringing in more highly paid foreign workers on temporary guest-worker visas, experiment with automation wherever they can and even replace crops with less labor-intensive alternatives. None of the workers are in the United States illegally.

The aging of Mexico's population slimmed the cohort of potential migrants. Mexico’s relative stability after the financial crises of the 1980s and 1990s reduced the pressures for them to leave. The collapse of the housing bubble in the United States slashed demand for their work north of the border.
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