GROWERS LOOKING OUT FOR GROWERS AND FARM WORKERS
Serving Agriculture Since 1971
NFL BOARD of directors
History of the Nisei Farmers League
In 1971, a small group of Japanese-American growers met in Fowler, California to discuss the mounting problems being faced by California agriculture. It was a turbulent time. The newly formed United Farm Workers labor union was increasing pressure on farms throughout the San Joaquin Valley. Growers were struggling daily with picketing, boycotts and changes to the state labor law. The group talked about the need to unify growers and to establish a rapid-response support network to protect growers property and farm workers ability to work. Within months more growers joined the discussion; a meeting was held and an organization was formed, taking its name from the term for second-generation Japanese-American “Nisei.”
As a “mutual protection society”, the early Nisei Farmers League (NFL) proved effective in defending the rights and property of its grower members. Membership swelled and soon the Nisei members were joined by growers from many other ethnicities. The violence and threats of the seventies eventually subsided, but the idea of grower unification strengthened.
The NFL quickly evolved into a sophisticated grower support organization committed to giving its membership a strong, informed voice in dealing with a growing array of issues. In the early eighties, the NFL was one of the key organizations that led the charge for immigration reform resulting in the passage of the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986.
NFL leadership worked tirelessly for the federal government to recognize the injustice that Japanese-Americans endured during World War II. In 1988, the Office of Redress Administration was established to provide a small gesture of restitution for the relocation and internment Japanese-Americans had endured. The NFL helped raise money for the construction of the Japanese American Memorial to Patriotism During WWII at the National Mall in Washington DC.
Today, from the fields of the San Joaquin Valley to the halls of government, the Nisei Farmers League is well-respected for its tireless commitment to serving the needs of its growers, farm workers and all of California agriculture.
1775 N Fine Ave
Fresno, CA 93727
Monday – Friday:
8am – 5pm