Labour / employment

Looking after workers, looking after business

“Protecting the rights of workers is essential to the future profitability and sustainability of Australian agriculture,” - APAL CEO, Phil Turnbull. Seasonal farm workers employed on apple and pear orchards are essential to the industry and their contributions are highly valued by growers. Without them the industry would not have enough workers to pick [...]

By |March 12th, 2019|Hot topics, Labour / employment|

Indonesia-Australian agreement paves way for more workers

On 4 March, the Australian government signed the Indonesia-Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement after eight years of negotiations. Part of the agreement will see an increase the amount of work and holiday visas for Indonesians from 1000 to 5000, which will increase the number of seasonal workers available next season. The agreement should not otherwise [...]

By |March 5th, 2019|Labour / employment, News|

Tuvalu workers ready to pick your apples and pears

Workers from the tiny South Pacific island nation of Tuvalu are among those keen to take on harvest jobs in Australia under the Seasonal Workers Program (SWP). Tuvalu, a collection of low-lying atolls and coral reefs north of Fiji and Samoa, with a population of just over 11,000, has been hard hit by both climate [...]

By |January 9th, 2019|Labour / employment|

Expanded labour options, but some new laws too

A lot has changed on the labour front since last harvest. Rob Hayes, Victorian State Manager of the National Harvest Labour Information Service (NHLIS) provides an update on changes to labour law, labour-hire licensing and visa flexibility and a word of advice to growers to take care they know and comply with newly-introduced laws. The [...]

By |January 9th, 2019|Labour / employment, News|

Protecting Workers – Agriculture’s Licence to Operate

Apple and Pear Australia Ltd (APAL) has categorically condemned the mistreatment of agricultural workers and denounced unscrupulous operators who damage the ‘clean, green’ reputation of Australian industry as a whole. Responding to the Harvest Trail Inquiry final report released by the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO), APAL has expressed serious concern at the level of non-compliance detailed [...]

By |November 26th, 2018|Labour / employment, News|

Fair Farms Initiative secures $1.5m

  The national Fair Farms Initiative (FFI) designed to improve workplace relations practices across Australian horticulture was given an additional $1.5m in ongoing funding last week. Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the ongoing funding for the FFI Monday, 5 November following discussions at the recent National Farmer’s Federation (NFF) Congress, where he spoke about the proposed [...]

By |November 14th, 2018|Labour / employment, News|

Visa changes announced

The Prime Minister has announced changes to the Working Holiday Maker and Seasonal Workers Programme (SWP) visas growers rely on to address labour challenges in Australia. Changes to the Working Holiday Maker program will let backpackers qualify for a third year in Australia by performing additional work in regional industries like agriculture, and will raise [...]

By |November 5th, 2018|Labour / employment, News|

Data crucial to Ag Visa’s advancement

Prime Minister Scott Morrison indicated support for the new Ag Visa program at the National Farmer’s Federation (NFF) Congress last week, but only on the condition that “hard data” was supplied. The NFF Congress convened in Canberra to discuss the most important issues facing Australian farmers. In addition to discussions about drought and diversity in [...]

By |October 24th, 2018|Labour / employment, News|

Eyeing the future of robotics

Robotics and automation will play a key role in fifth-generation fruit grower Mitchell McNab’s plans to drive efficiencies and quality in his Goulburn Valley family orchard. Using remote sensors established across the orchard, Mitchell measures soil moisture to help manage water requirements. For more than a century H.V. McNab & Son Pty Ltd [...]

New appointment to boost jobs in Southeast Qld

Queensland's Growcom has appointed Craig Dillon to service agriculture employers across south-east Queensland to alleviate any stress they may face when trying to source new staff members. "Agriculture is a volatile industry, with seasonal changes highly influencing workface needs, and it can be an uphill battle trying to promote its benefits to jobseekers,”said Growcom Workforce Development [...]

By |October 3rd, 2018|Labour / employment, News|