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International Trainee Program Strikes Chord With Dairyfarmers

“The international trainee program  has certainly struck a chord with Australian dairyfarmers” says Karen Moroney of Auzred XB.

Auzred XB,  decided some months back,  to introduce another service  for  dairyfarmers.   Due to the nature of our business,  we have a lot of one on one contact with farmers around the country and being farmers ourselves,  we know first hand  what a problem it is getting skilled workers  who want to work on a dairy farm.

The comment often voiced was that it seems that Aussies are no longer interested in taking up the occupation of dairyfarming, with many of the younger generation moving off the land to pursue careers in other occupations that are less labour intensive and  are perceived to provide a better work, life balance .

This has left farmers with a labour gap that needs to be filled and so many have been turning to  using backpackers – young adults who are travelling the world and looking to supplement their income by picking up labouring jobs in the agricultural  industry, as there are so many positions available.  While this has been helpful to farmers, along the way it has also created some problems,  as many of them come unskilled and so a degree of training  and induction is needed before they are ready to either  milk in the dairy or take on the duties of raising calves.  Often just as the employee becomes competent, they then move on and the process has to be repeated all over again.  This all takes farmers time and money  for training that cannot be recovered.

“I have a friend in South Africa says Karen,   who introduced me to a program that  mentors and trains young South Africans in  dairyfarming.  As a portion of their training with the Future Farmers Foundation they are sent abroad to do an internship for a year to gain further training  in another country.  This rounds out their education and gives them a life experience that would otherwise not be available to them says Karen”

“These young men are proving their worth in Australia,  as they come here to gain further knowledge and because they want to be dairy farmers back in their country of origin.  They are eager and willing to learn making them great additions to  a farmers work  force and coming  with the background experience they already have in farming,  they often tick all the right boxes for dairy farmers .

Since the introduction of the program,  we have  already had  fantastic enquiry from dairy farmers interested in exploring this alternative option says Karen,  “ We are encouraged and excited about the response to date”.

We partner with CAEP(Communicating  for Agricultural Educational Programs) here in Australia, who we have found have a brilliant program to facilitate trainees such as Brian to come to us.  CAEP source trainees from many locations in the world says Karen, not just from South Africa.   For instance just this week,  we placed a Ukrainian couple on a dairy farm in South Australia.

CAEP have the same vision of giving young adults an opportunity to experience the world through agricultural exchange and it also provides an opportunity for rural families to be touched by other cultures, often cultivating lifelong friendships. And host farms benefit from working with motivated and qualified trainees at an affordable rate.  Compared to other programs, we found that CAEP took a very professional and caring approach to placements, they work hard  to match farmers with trainees and vice versa, so farmers are not left wondering what skill sets the trainee will bring and likewise the trainee has a very good idea of the farming situation they will be placed in.

“We are certain the program will grow, as  word on the high  calibre of trainees we receive  circulates among dairy farmers” says Karen

To Listen to one farmers experience with a young South African Trainee from the Future Farmers Foundation project  CLICK HERE

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