Education in AgTech is key to the next generation of Queensland workers to securing a career in agriculture.

In the next 10 years, 30% of agriculture roles will be automated and 11% will be augmented with an increasing emphasis on innovative artificial intelligence and wearable devices.

AgTech will change the employment landscape in agriculture in the future, with the sector expected to become a $100 billion industry by 2030.

It is prime time to upskill in AgTech to make the most of opportunities emerging now and into the future.

Study and training

Pursuing a career in AgTech offers excitement, innovation and problem solving where you can help agribusiness thrive in the next generation of farming.

From fisheries to livestock farming or horticulture, AgTech is making an impact on management practices already. Processes are becoming more efficient, digitised and driven by tech solutions –the future is bright.

Agriculture is a fast-changing industry in Queensland, rapidly shaped by big data, large-scale computing and new technology.

Find out more:

Discover agribusiness or science degrees available at Study Queensland or at the following university websites:

In the classroom

Bring AgTech into the classroom at your school by applying for support and funding of up to $10,000 through the Agribusiness Gateway to Industry Schools Program.

Transcript

the agri-business gateway to industry

schools program is actually part of our

next gen ag program it aims to excite

students about the variety of jobs in

agriculture and the role that

agriculture plays in food security and

global markets currently there's 67

schools in the project across queensland

we have one teacher school that has a

busch garden and they do things like

soil management salt monitoring and they

use all of that data in their classrooms

for their stem work and then we have a

number of schools who are fully

vertically integrated they do everything

on their school grounds from grow the

calf to they plant the seed and then

they eventually sell that product

there's a whole new layer of farming

that is now opening up with with um you

know smart farming digital technology

and i think that you know the sensors

and the smart farming network that we've

set up has really helped the kids

understand that there's there's a whole

new level that that didn't exist really

five years ago that's now opening up

which is the future before i did this

course i didn't really realize how much

technology is actually used in

agriculture when i sort of pictured

agriculture it was more just done my

hands like they did way back when now

it's so different like you can see how

much technology they use they use all

these different sensors

and

drones and everything to see when crops

are growing or how well they are it's

really cool it's exciting because even

though agriculture is definitely fun

just learning about the animals and the

plants and how they work but it's also

really fun being able to make your own

experiments and learn your own things

through testing using data

technology when we look at the data if

there's like a weight drop she'll look

immediately into diseases that can cause

that drop and i like to and she looks at

food yeah i look at nutrition because i

really want to get the alpacas our

school our packers onto a diet that will

help them to stay at a steady weight

that's healthy for them agtech is

important to our department because it

offers opportunities in efficiencies so

it's important that we get students

really involved in ag tech like corinda

has been and we have many schools that

are doing a similar work because these

roles are going to be the roles of the

future and we're going to augment our

current roles into future roles i think

the agribusiness program and the you

know the funding that we've got from the

agri business grant is it's definitely

like opened up that possibilities for

some students and made them see

things that they would not have

considered as a career you know that

they now realize that this is something

that i can

make my passion that i really can pursue

that then

leads kids to think well this is what i

would like to do for a career

you know this is a journey i would like

to take i hope

many students who take part in the

agribusiness program go on to study or

work in the agriculture industry many of

these jobs haven't even been thought of

yet because there's so many fields in

agriculture i'd love to be part of one

of those when i'm older and new school

since you come to the school it's just

my god wow this is amazing i really want

to do this later on whom life

you

Starting your AgTech career

As the demand for automated precision agriculture technologies increases, so will demand for Queensland’s tech workforce in farming.

The Australian Agritech Association regularly posts job openings via a slack channel via the #jobs thread.

You can also subscribe to the AusAgritech monthly newsletter which has job advertisements.

Find out more:

Attracting workers

You can access free support to attract and retain workers via the Queensland Agriculture Workforce Network (QAWN).

The service provides dedicated officers for advice on workforce services and initiatives to all Queensland agribusinesses.

Transcript

- The Queensland Agriculture Workforce Network,

or QAWN, is a free service that supports

Queensland agribusiness, regardless of commodity

or organisation membership

to attract, train, and retain workers.

Funded by the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries,

QAWN is a network of industry based officers

who work with producers and operators

across the supply chain

to address recruitment and skilling issues.

Importantly, the programme is available across the state,

is regionally based,

and is supported by peak agriculture bodies

who host the workforce offices in local offices.

Current QAWN industry partners include

Queensland Farmers' Federation, Growcom, CHRRUP,

Bowen Gumlu Growers Association,

Bundaberg Fruit & Vegetable Growers, CANEGROWERS Mackay,

FNQ Growers.

- TASSAL produces Australia's largest production

of farmed tiger prawns.

So with the implementation of the QAWN programme for us

when we commenced our operations in Northern Queensland,

it was really a critical component

to build those partnerships with the different stakeholders

and looking at the other agribusinesses within the area

that we can partnership with.

- The agriculture and aquaculture industry

is critical in the future prosperity of North Queensland.

You know, looking at our future economy,

the success of those industries is going to be key

to ensuring we're a prosperous region.

The QAWN programme is vital to that,

ensuring that we've got the workers that we need

to go into the future.

- The QAWN programme offers the businesses the opportunity

to connect with a locally based QAWN officer.

It means that they really understand

what the needs are of the community

and what facilities and infrastructure that they can access,

including training that they can get involved in.

- Bare Essentials produces leafy green vegetables and herbs

here in the Lockyer Valley, Queensland.

We've been growing since 1914 and we supply Australia wide.

The type of barriers that Bare Essentials faces

with employment is attracting staff

that are interested in agriculture

and really see themselves as part of the agri industry

and are after a career.

The QAWN programme has provided Bare Essentials

with specific assistance

in relation to finding staff and training them

and helping us to connect with them.

- QAWN officers are members

of several working groups and member networks,

and we're constantly updated with information

that we then share with businesses

to support their labour needs.

We provide advice and guidance

on workforce attraction, recruitment, and development.

And we form connections that will assist

in building a strong workforce

for the future of the agricultural sector.

- My farm currently produces sugar for Bundy Sugar

and we grow peanuts, which yeah,

goes into the peanut butter brands.

I can see in the next generation coming through,

there's been, from what I can see,

a big disconnect from kids

knowing where their food comes from.

So the QAWN programme has been good

because it can, you know, bring the current students

from this generation at school out to real working farms.

I actually had a girl that I did a few weeks work

over the Christmas holidays,

and I think she's gone on to get,

you know, a job after school on a property.

- So the barriers we've faced and specifically around COVID

has been finding local employees that are ag specific.

So obviously that brings with it some skill gap,

experience gaps, and knowledge gaps.

So the QAWN programme has allowed us to utilise,

I guess, third party resources

to find people like Cody who are ag passionate.

- I've grown up with agriculture my whole life.

My father worked on state cattle stations.

I've got friends and family that own properties.

I'm come from a country town myself,

and I've just grown up with agriculture

and I've grown to love it.

Summer's Harvest Programme was a programme

that was started up a few years ago

to help kids that love agriculture work in the ag industry.

The advice I'd give to other young people is have a go.

You're not going to fully embrace it

if you don't give it a go, get your hands dirty,

and get the full experience for yourself.

I can stand here and tell you what it's like

but you won't understand for yourself

unless you go and give it a go.

- Contact your local QAWN officer

for support in attracting, retaining,

and training workers for your business.

Last updated: 14 Oct 2022