Guy Barnett,Minister for Primary Industries and Water
The Tasmanian Government is helping Tasmanians to take up picking and harvesting jobs, with the Seasonal Worker Transport Pilot which enables local workers to get to and from work on farms.
Initiated by Fruit Growers Tasmania, the Pilot delivered by Community Transport Services Tasmania, will offer transport services six days per week to participating businesses using bus and coach-based transport services.
It is anticipated the Pilot will transport up to 250 workers per day who would otherwise be unable to take up the seasonal work opportunities.
This is a fantastic example of industry and Government working together, to find innovative solutions to issues that are affecting the sector.
Our top priority remains getting Tasmanians to fill the picking, sorting, packing, driving and pruning positions, and we urge Tasmanians in need of work to roll their sleeves up and help our vital primary industries.
Agriculture is a pillar of the state’s economy, with a farm gate value of $1.9 billion, and fruits now make up half of our State’s total fruit production value – $230 million in farm-gate value.
The Tasmanian Government is providing $208,060 over two years to deliver the Seasonal Worker Transport Pilot, and help get locals to farms to help with the picking and harvesting.
Fruit Growers Tasmania is delivering the Pilot in partnership with the Huon Valley Council and the Get Picking Program, and once tested will expand to other areas across the State.
The Transport Pilot is part of the Tasmanian Government’s $1.9 million Agricultural Workforce Resilience Package to support the industry to address barriers for Tasmanian’s to take up harvest jobs.
Today’s launch is another positive step in our goal to support this season harvest while we continue to grow the farm gate value of Tasmania’s agriculture sector to $10 billion a year by 2050, driving investment and creating local jobs, many in regional areas.