Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Horticulture Industry Move Helps Combat Labour Shortage

New Horticulture Industry Initiative Helps Combat Labour Shortage

A new ‘hands on’ initiative, which brings the classroom into the orchard, is helping combat the labour shortage in the horticulture industry.

The Eastern Institute of Technology (EIT), Work and Income and local iwi have teamed up with John Bostock, owner of JM Bostock Ltd, to help get people off the unemployment benefit and into permanent employment.

The partners have worked together to establish an EIT level three sustainable fruit production course, which has both theory and practical modules. The theory mirrors the orchard cycle to enhance the student’s learning. In 2014 the programme will start earlier in the year to better coincide with orchard practice.

Mr Bostock who provides an orchard for the training course says the programme is a high quality-training scheme that ticks the right boxes for growers with real job prospects at the end for graduates.

“The key for us is getting these trainees into full time employment rather than just seasonal jobs. We are helping up-skill them, so they can easily apply what they learn to a real job in the orchard.”

Fourteen students completed in November 2013, and all gained employment.

Jason Cunningham and his two sons graduated from the course in November and moved into permanent employment with JM Bostock Ltd.

"We have job security now, so it takes the stress away. I used to get really low when I knew the seasonal work was coming to an end and I had to go back on the Dole. But this course now gives me more purpose in life and real direction.”

Graduate Bill Neilson who also moved into a full time job with JM Bostock Ltd says the course has opened doors for him.

“Two years ago, I was being a dole bludger, doing nothing but sitting on the couch and now I’m out in the sun picking apples. I look forward to getting up each day now. I’m setting a good example to my children by working. It gives them the incentive to get out there and work for a living too."

EIT Horticulture tutor, Erin Simpson says that having the classroom on an orchard helps the students get beneficial hands on experience. While teaching the theory, Erin was able to take students from the classroom into the orchard to bring the theory to life.

“Industry buy-in has been key to this course taking off. It ensures that we are providing programmes to meet industry needs. The students start with pruning, pest and disease control, tractor driving, orchard machinery usage, irrigation, maintenance, and then thinning, so it’s sequential through the season and means at the end of it all they have the right practical skills to get a job.

“The timing is ideal because when they finish the course in November there are plenty of jobs out there for them.”

Mahi Hauparoa says the course was challenging and there were times he wanted to give up.

"I got to a stage where I was going to throw it in, but I’m thankful I stayed determined and finished because it’s made me a lot happier and I’m actually getting out there and doing something with my life now."

Mr Bostock has been encouraging other growers to get in behind the sustainable fruit production programme and as a result more growers are jumping on board this winter and providing support.

“If we all get together and each do a little bit we can make a big difference. Unemployment creates social challenges in Hawke’s Bay, so if we are all paddling in the same direction it will help."

The first time graduates were treated to a special graduation ceremony at the Te Aranga Marae in Flaxmere on Wednesday where their life changing achievements were recognised.

Applications are open for this industry-focused course now. The next 20-week winter course starts in March.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Cosmetics & Pollution: Proposal To Ban Microbeads

Cosmetic products containing microbeads will be banned under a proposal announced by the Minister for the Environment today. Marine scientists have been advocating for a ban on the microplastics, which have been found to quickly enter waterways and harm marine life. More>>

ALSO:

NIWA: 2016 New Zealand’s Warmest Year On Record

Annual temperatures were above average (0.51°C to 1.20°C above the annual average) throughout the country, with very few locations observing near average temperatures (within 0.5°C of the annual average) or lower. The year 2016 was the warmest on record for New Zealand, based on NIWA’s seven-station series which begins in 1909. More>>

ALSO:

Farewell 2016: NZ Economy Flies Through 2016's Political Curveballs

Dec. 23 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand's economy batted away some curly political curveballs of 2016 to end the year on a high note, with its twin planks of a booming construction sector and rampant tourism soon to be joined by a resurgent dairy industry. More>>

ALSO:


NZ Economy: More Growth Than Expected In 3rd Qtr

Dec. 22 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand's economy grew at a faster pace than expected in the September quarter as a booming construction sector continued to underpin activity, spilling over into related building services, and was bolstered by tourism and transport ... More>>

  • NZ Govt - Solid growth for NZ despite fragile world economy
  • NZ Council of Trade Unions - Government needs to ensure economy raises living standards
  • KiwiRail Goes Deisel: Cans electric trains on partially electrified North Island trunkline

    Dec. 21 (BusinessDesk) – KiwiRail, the state-owned rail and freight operator, said a small fleet of electric trains on New Zealand’s North Island would be phased out over the next two years and replaced with diesel locomotives. More>>

  • KiwiRail - KiwiRail announces fleet decision on North Island line
  • Greens - Ditching electric trains massive step backwards
  • Labour - Bill English turns ‘Think Big’ into ‘Think Backwards’
  • First Union - Train drivers condemn KiwiRail’s return to “dirty diesel”
  • NZ First - KiwiRail Going Backwards for Xmas
  • NIWA: The Year's Top Science Findings

    Since 1972 NIWA has operated a Clean Air Monitoring Station at Baring Head, near Wellington... In June, Baring Head’s carbon dioxide readings officially passed 400 parts per million (ppm), a level last reached more than three million years ago. More>>

    ALSO:

    Get More From Scoop

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Business
    Search Scoop  
     
     
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news