FARM POLICY JOURNAL

Autumn 2017, Vol. 14, No. 1

The changing agricultural workforce

The Australian farming workforce has changed considerably over recent decades, as mechanisation and technology have been substituted for labour, a specialist farm advisory and service sector has developed, and many low skill on-farm roles have been casualised. The changes that have occurred in agribusiness are no less significant, with the employment of unskilled labour declining in many businesses, and the roles of technical and managerial staff changing as automation and technology advance. The rapid rate of development of digital technology across the sector in recent years suggests that these changes will continue to occur into the future.
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The Changing Agricultural Workforce

Richard Heath

Agriculture offers one the most diverse and in demand opportunities for job hunters in any sector of the economy. There is a surplus of jobs compared to graduates and the range of job types and career paths available is huge and changing rapidly. Agriculture has always needed a mix of soft and hard skills as managers pull together a range of expertise to make appropriate decisions. This need is going to grow even more as the range of technologies, practices and business processes that make up a modern farm business grow. buy now


The Changing Agricultural Workforce – How Can it be Sustained and Developed?

Dan Korff

The Future Farmers Network (FFN) is a national network for young people working in agriculture and agribusiness. In this paper, the Chair of the FFN discusses the future of agriculture’s workforce, and specifically what skills, training and labour requirements may be needed. The future agricultural workforce needs to train themselves not only in areas of traditional knowledge, but also in the new, emerging skill sets. buy now


The Technology Paradigm Driving Agricultural Workforce Change

J E Pratley

Predicting the agricultural jobs of the future is especially difficult given the pace of change in agricultural work at this time – many jobs being created now were not in the pipeline a decade ago and we can expect this to continue into the future. Traditionally, the agricultural workforce has had two distinct components – those who work on-farm and those who work in the value chain off-farm. buy now


Agribusiness is a Cornerstone of Australia’s Future Prosperity

Tim Burrow

Australian agriculture is going through a period of rapid change. Agricultural output surged by an extraordinary 27.6% in 2016, following a record harvest in every state. The growth potential of the agribusiness industry is creating industry optimism to open new markets, create jobs and develop new technologies. Today’s agribusinesses incorporate all types of exciting career paths, and increasingly attract more newcomers, more innovators. Engineering, science, IT, commerce and management are all cornerstone skill sets for successful businesses in this growing sector. buy now


New Immigrants Critical to Australian Agriculture

Jock Collins, Branka Krivokapic-Skoko and Devaki Monani

Since the turn of the century new visa pathways and policy initiatives have led to unprecedented numbers of permanent and temporary immigrants settling in rural and regional Australia. Many of these new immigrants in the Australian bush have worked in the agricultural sector of the economy helping to redress labour shortages and adding new skills and innovative insights to contribute greatly to increasing the productivity of the Australian agricultural industry. buy now


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