• Patrick McBride

Jobs aplenty, good pay on dairy farms for COVID unemployed

Updated: Jun 3, 2020

DairyNZ wants people who have lost jobs due to COVID-19 know there is plenty of work on dairy farms - and that they might well earn more than in their previous role.

PHOTO: File.

With the national unemployment rate forecast to rise sharply due to COVID-19, DairyNZ is encouraging people to consider work on dairy farms in a new Go Dairy campaign that also includes entry-level training to help their transition to farming.

Immediately, there are 1,000 jobs up for grabs on dairy farms, says DairyNZ’s chief executive Dr Tim Mackle.

“As the new season gets underway on June 1, even more positions are likely to become available,” says Dr Mackle.

“For people who’re looking for work and like the idea of caring for animals and the environment, there are lots of jobs – and career progression opportunities.”

People interested in knowing more about working on dairy farms, where the jobs are and the introductory training can visit godairy.co.nz/career-changers where they can register their interest.

While the Go Dairy career changers campaign, which is supported by Federated Farmers, aims to create awareness of the job opportunities, there is a big emphasis on ensuring new staff understand what is involved in farm life.

“We want a win-win situation – for new dairy farming employees to be happy and fulfilled in their new lifestyle and jobs, and for farm employers to have great talent working for them,” Dr Mackle says.

He adds that dairy also pays one of the highest average wages of all the primary sectors.

“For the most part, we’re anticipating interested people will be from the regions where there are big job losses in tourism and hospitality – and where there is dairying close by.