Monday, 26 September 2005

The tomato diaries 3 - butt picking

After the first days fast and furious picking the Dutch girl and I ended up on a European team. We picked 18 bins and earned roughly $80 for the day. We probably could have got a couple of bins more but on the last patch of the field we were butt picking.

Butt picking occurs when a patch has previously been picked but the fruit at the very bottom of the plants has been left on because the first lot of pickers were lazy bastards.

Butt picking is universally hated because it's physically painful (all that crouching and bending) and financially fruitless (ha ha it's a pun - get it!) as half of the fruit at the bottom is infested with worms and a quarter is rotten. Which means you pick very little fruit for a lot of effort.

Day three saw us spending 2 hours but picking 4 patches, we earned a grand total of $20 each and were then sent home for the day. It wasn't even worth getting out of bed for, but it did give us the chance to spend the afternoon exploring Proserpine and getting laundry done.

I ended up making about $300 from 5 days of tomato picking. Apparently if I had gotten there 2 weeks earlier I could have made $1000 as it was the height of the season and the fruit was falling of the bushes.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, thats hard toil. I hope you're still alive!

    best of luck