2015 Winter - Labour matters in Australian agriculture

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FPJ1202D, Tomlinson, A (2015), Improving Skills and Capacity in the Australian Grains Industry in Australian Agriculture

FPJ1202D, Tomlinson, A (2015), Improving Skills and Capacity in the Australian Grains Industry in Australian Agriculture, in Farm Policy Journal: Vol. 12 No. 2, Winter, pp. 29-35.

The Australian grains industry has undergone major structural changes over recent decades, including governments withdrawing resources from research and extension services and also dismantling statutory marketing arrangements such as the Australian Wheat Board. There have also been major changes in grain production practices such as developments in precision farming technologies and an increased demand for non-family labour. These changes have effectively transformed the workforce requirements of the Australian grains industry.

This paper provides a limited review of the literature available to define the concept of a skills and capacity framework as well as why labour and improving skills and capacity is important for the grains industry. The paper identifies some strengths and weaknesses in workforce initiatives undertaken within the Australian grains industry to improve skills and capacity. Opportunities were also identified for improving industry workforce skills and capacity which could potentially assist the Australian grains industry achieve higher rates of productivity growth in the future.

 

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