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Media Release 29 May 2020

  • Delivery date for National Agricultural Workforce Strategy extended to end October 2020
  • Closing date for submissions extended from 1 June to 3 August 2020.
  • Strategy will include contributions made by industry on the impact of COVID-19.

The Australian Government has extended the delivery date for the National Agricultural Workforce Strategy to the end of October 2020 and the closing date for submissions from 1 June to 3 August 2020.

Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud, said the extension will allow stakeholders sufficient time to contribute to the strategy, and mean stakeholders and government will be in a better position to engage with the strategy when it is delivered.

“The Australian Government has engaged strongly with state and territory governments and industry throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to help ensure farm businesses have the workforce they need and to keep paths to market for agricultural produce open,” Minister Littleproud said.

“Nevertheless, there is uncertainty about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on agricultural supply chains and the expected supply and demand for labour into the future.

“It is important to extend the delivery date and submission period so the strategy can include contributions and observations made by industry on the impact of COVID-19 on the availability of labour.

“This will also include innovative approaches to deal with the agricultural workforce issues that have arisen due to COVID-19.

“I encourage both farm businesses and the public to have your say on the National Agricultural Workforce Strategy to help support the agricultural sector to attract, retain and develop the future agricultural workforce.”

The 2019-20 Budget provided $1.9 million over four years for the development of the strategy.

“The National Agricultural Labour Advisory Committee has been consulting with a wide range of stakeholders since March 2020, to inform the development of the strategy to grow Australia’s agricultural workforce now and into the future.

Have your say on the Agricultural Workforce Strategy here: https://haveyoursay.agriculture.gov.au/national-agricultural-workforce-strategy

Fast Facts:

  • On 11 December 2019, the Government announced the membership of the National Agricultural Labour Advisory Committee.
  • The committee is developing the National Agricultural Workforce Strategy, which will investigate ways to ensure a sustainable future workforce for the sector, and will deliver the strategy to government by the end of October 2020.