1 October 2020

The agriculture industry has faced labour workforce challenges for years. Growers have heard announcement after announcement from the Liberal and National parties, but each year they struggle to find workers to pick and pack their produce.

COVID has merely exacerbated labour shortfalls because of travel restrictions.

Yesterday, the Morrison Government made yet another announcement but failed to provide any substance to it – no details of incentives for young people to work in the regions, no plans to provide the housing and infrastructure they’ll need, no details on how they will prevent wage theft and worker exploitation.

Instead the Deputy Prime Minister made bizarre assertions about farm work being good for Instagram stories and the opportunity to find love.

This is a serious issue. There are complicated problems in ensuring a harvest workforce that will require well-developed and careful solutions.

The Morrison Coalition Government has consistently failed Victorian farmers on harvest labour shortages for seven long years. As usual, they are all announcement and no substance.