Access to reliable sources of appropriately skilled and seasonal labour in the agriculture and food
industries is critical to the future competitiveness of Australia’s rural and regional economies.
To better inform government policies that support farm businesses to gain access to appropriate
workers, a program of work will be undertaken to fill critical data gaps in Australia’s agricultural
workforce. It will:
- Expand the ABARES survey to collect more detailed and better data on the agricultural workforce.
- Undertake a time-series study to better understand how the Australian agricultural labour force
has changed and can be expected to change.
- Scan and assess developments in agricultural technology to understand their impact on
current and future agricultural labour forces.
Why is this important?
For Australia to take advantage of growing markets—in particular export markets—and maximise
its contribution to economic development in rural and regional Australia, it is vital that it meets
its agricultural workforce demands.
To ensure this occurs, meaningful and targeted data is required to inform effective government
policies and programs that take account of current and future workforce requirements in the
Who will benefit?
There are significant benefits to farmers and agriculture industries if government can better
target policies to address agricultural labour issues.
Rural and regional Australia will benefit from improved labour supply in communities that
support agriculture industries.
This in turn will have a positive economic effect in the regions and support regional development.
What will this cost?
Seasonal Agriculture Labour Demand and Supply package - $4.7m