June 2018 | Dairy industry calls for skilled visa reform amid labour shortages

Date: 21 June 2018

Source: SBS

The peak body for Australia's dairy farmers is calling on the government to overhaul its skilled migrant visa program to help solve a labour crisis in the industry.

Australian Dairy Farmers says the industry is losing hundreds of millions of dollars a year in employee turnover.

President Terry Richardson said: "we don't have that succession [of families] like we did in the past, we're relying more onĀ labourĀ outside".

Mr Richardson said farmers were left in the lurch when the government abolished the 457 visa system earlier this year.

"We have farmers that have opportunity to grow their business but because of labour shortages they're unable to do so."

Some dairy farm workers are now eligible for a Temporary Skills Shortage visa but Australian Dairy Farmers is asking the government to provide longer visas and pathways to permanent residency.