The Morrison Government is encouraging Australians to take up seasonal work opportunities in regional areas, as part of a collaboration trial to support the horticulture industry.
The Harvest Trail Services, which have been expanded into 16 regions, will help ensure growers in major horticulture areas have access to the workers they need to get the crop from paddock to plate.
Federal Member for Groom, Garth Hamilton said the $1 million funding boost to the Harvest Trail Services Industry Collaboration Trial will support five organisations.
“This trial is about supporting industry to meet their employment demands, to develop new ways to encourage Australians to take up opportunities in the horticulture sector.
“We have seen during the pandemic that our industry relies heavily on a workforce that is currently unavailable, and the Liberal Nationals are supporting industry to tackle this demand, to get our world class produce from paddock to plate,” Mr Hamilton said.
The funding opportunities range from pre-employment projects, mentoring, training, development of videos, engagement with school leavers, and social media campaigns.
Mr Hamilton said he looked forward to seeing more residents from the Toowoomba and Darling Downs participating in the horticulture workforce.
“On top of this, we are also providing relocation assistance to people who relocate to harvest and regional areas to take up agricultural work,” Mr Hamilton said.
From 1 November 2020, relocation assistance is available to people who relocate to harvest and regional areas to take up short-term agricultural work, including Australians who are not receiving income support and those with the right to work in Australia.
Those relocating to take up short-term agricultural work may be eligible to receive up to $6,000 if they are an Australian worker; or $2,000 if they are visa holders with general work rights in Australia, not restricted to an employer or a type of work.
Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, said the trial will test-run different ways to promote harvest work to Australian job seekers.
“We know growers are struggling to find the labour they need, which is why Harvest Trail Services is as important as ever,” Minister Cash said.
“As part of Harvest Trail Services, we have provided additional funds to a number of growers groups for them to develop innovative approaches to promote new opportunities in the horticulture sector.”
The organisations selected are:
- Fruit Growers Victoria Limited
- Northern Territory Farmers Association Incorporated
- Queensland Fruit and Vegetable Growers Limited (GrowCom)
- Bundaberg Fruit and Vegetable Growers Cooperative Limited
- AUSVEG Limited.
More details on the Harvest Trail can be found at https://jobsearch.gov.au/harvest
For more information about Relocation Assistance to Take Up a Job visit:
Garth Hamilton MP – (07) 4632 4144