Queensland working-holiday makers, students on break and those seeking employment are being encouraged to #pickqld to work and explore their way around the state.
Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, a significant labour shortage of 6000 to 7000 workers have been seen in the horticulture sector alone, along with a 46 per cent decline in working-holiday makers in Australia (between March to August 2020).
The new #pickqld campaign is aimed at attracting and retaining seasonal workers across Queensland’s agriculture sector to ensure agribusinesses can still access the workforce they require to secure food supply and lead the state’s economic recovery.
There are many diverse local communities to be discovered, from Balonne Shire in south west Queensland (with stunning landscapes and white cotton fields), to the Sunshine Coast region in south east Queensland (in the shadows of the heritage listed Glass House Mountains) to Cook Shire in north Queensland (vast natural beauty and rich Aboriginal culture), where you can pick anything from grapes, melons and cotton, to bananas, mangoes and strawberries.
“Seasonal workers play a key role in keeping the state’s agricultural sector moving. They also give local communities right across Queensland – from the South East to the Far North - a much-needed economic boost,” LGAQ President and Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson said.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has temporarily put a stop to the usual influx of overseas travellers who would ordinarily fill many of these roles.
“The silver lining in this however, is that it creates opportunities for Queenslanders in need of work to take up one of the picking jobs on offer, make an important contribution to local economic recovery efforts, and as a bonus, see parts of the state they may not have had the chance to experience before.”
Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Mark Furner said Queensland’s economic recovery plan recognised the important role the agriculture sector, and due to Queensland’s strong health response to COVID-19, Queensland is more open than other states and able to get underway delivering this plan.
“Workers can also be assured that agribusinesses employing seasonal workers have COVID-19 workplace health management plans in place to ensure everybody’s safety,” Mr Furner said.
Queensland has a wide range of seasonal opportunities where workers can enjoy exploring Queensland while funding their adventure.
With so many natural attractions across Queensland, workers can choose where they would like to work and explore, while also supporting the future of agribusiness within Queensland.
For further information on the #pickqld campaign and to see what work is available when, and in what regions, visit qld.gov.au/pickqld or call 13 25 23.