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Vic-Tas boost to harvest labour but timing and cost are key

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APAL CEO Phil Turnbull has welcomed the Victorian and Tasmanian governments’ announcement last Friday that will see up to 1,500 seasonal workers quarantine in Tasmania before joining Victoria’s harvest labour supply.

The announcement brings Victoria in line with all other Australian states who have established programs to enable the arrival of overseas labour.

“The announcement provides a much-needed boost for our Victorian producers – a boost in harvest labour and in their confidence for the coming season – provided the cost sharing can be resolved and labour is available in time,” said Mr Turnbull.

Mr Turnbull said APAL would continue to work with growers and Fruit Growers Victoria to obtain further information regarding the proposed cost sharing arrangements and to facilitate access for Victorian apple and pear producers in time for the harvest that will begin in coming days.

“Our labour harvest needs will peak in February and March, so we are eager to see any remaining aspects of the program confirmed and program participants on farm as soon as possible.

“Providing the incoming workers with an opportunity learn and acclimatise before we hit the harvest peak will help growers and workers make the most of this opportunity,” said Mr Turnbull.

Related links

Fairwork Ombudsman Horticulture Showcase

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