Agriculture. It is the very industry our country was founded upon and one that remains a constant and reassuring presence during these unknown and challenging times.
With the arrival of COVID-19, subsequent social distancing and self-isolation, the demand for protein and perishables has hit an unprecedented high. This huge increase in consumer shopping sees our farmers working harder than ever to meet these demands for quality produce and they need extra staff to keep up.
While we have previously seen the effects of economic downturn, people must be fed and clothed, and this increased demand is already resulting in more job opportunities across the agriculture space. This increase in jobs may be a lifeline to those unable to continue in their current role due to the new restrictions, or through the drought and recent bushfires (which are still impacting the country).
For many, the agriculture industry provides an excellent platform for people to utilise existing skills that are transferrable across a range of sectors. It can be a win-win situation where people find rewarding new jobs and business operators in rural and regional Australia get the experience and knowledge from a wider pool of candidates who may not have previously considered agriculture as a career industry.
Agriculture has many facets. It’s not just about farming cattle and crops – there’s diversity, great mateship and world leading technology applied throughout the industry that makes for exciting job prospects. One area is Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) – this is now a huge part of agriculture and roles can be anything from Business Development Managers and WHS Officers right through to Mechanics and Forklift Operators. This is just one example – there’s just so much opportunity across the board.
There’s also plenty for those who don’t have a trade or key set of skills, with interesting roles happening all over Australia. People can find work anywhere from the Northern Territory all the way down to Tasmania, with many business operators open to giving people the chance to prove themselves if they’re willing and show commitment to the job.
Another key facet of agriculture is the lifestyle associated with living in rural and regional areas. Having experienced extremely difficult times for several years, these communities play a vital role in supporting all our farmers and the many people who come to work for a season or long term. The inclusiveness, community events and lifestyle that country living offers is going to become more attractive as the Coronavirus subsides and people focus more on the health and wellbeing of themselves and their families.