Launching this year are two brand new apprenticeships set to equip a whole new generation of farmers with a more extensive and up-to-date skillset.
The Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) have worked closely with industry to establish the criteria for two new Apprenticeship Standards: General Farm Worker and Livestock Unit Technician, both with the goal of meeting the future needs of the agriculture and horticulture industries during a period of unprecedented change.
The new apprenticeships are the result of an industry-wide consultation survey, commissioned by AHDB, which ran throughout October to gainfeedback from some of the largest and most productive employers in the industry. The results reflected a wide range of farm businesses, covering all sectors and across the supply chain.
The schemes have been created to help budding farmers take their first steps into the industry, with the Livestock Unit Technician scheme honing in on more specialised areas of expertise as s well as appealing to those already committed to a future in farming, providing new opportunities for young people.
School leavers and individuals entering into the world of agriculture for the first time will be able to start their journey with a level two General Farm Worker apprenticeship – a standard which has been widely sought after by industry employers.
With General Farm Worker standard, the apprentice completing their training, which covers both arable and livestock, are able to progress to a level three qualification to gain a greater understanding of their chosen sector. For Livestock Unit Technician, there are a number of progressive pathways to take which can help further their knowledge on livestock and management of people. A third of with a sixth technical/farm manager is also currently awaiting development.
AHDB Skills Development Manager Amie Burke said: “We‘re delighted that after an intense period of industry-wide collaboration, we’ve been able to get these two new standards over the line. We listened to the feedback from employers who said they needed a wider skillset among their new recruits and that is exactly how we have shaped these two new apprenticeships.
“Taken in conjunction with the three previously developed standards, this apprenticeship offers so much scope for development and covers a range of skills – all of which are essential as we look to the future of farming.
”We are also looking to set standards for the next stage of their career with a level four apprenticeship. For this, we need further input from industry employers to ensure that we continue to provide the right standards to meet the needs of farming industry.”
The new apprenticeships have been welcomed by the Development Board of The Institute for Agriculture and Horticulture (TIAH). TIAH will launch later this year as the home of professional development and training for the agriculture and horticulture industry in England.
Employers can get involved with the scheme by visiting https://ahdb.org.uk/trailblazer-apprenticeships.