Attracting and growing new talent for our sector
Primary ITO is committed to positioning the horticulture sector as an exciting and worthwhile career choice and acknowledges that this will play an important part in ensuring the future success of our businesses, the wider primary industries and New Zeala
Primary ITO are working with organisations across horticulture sectors and throughout the supply chain to champion horticulture and deliver a coordinated strategy to recruit young people through our Gateway and Trades Academy schools programmes and Get Ahead events. These provide a great way for students to get real-life work experience and see what the sector can offer them while they are still in secondary school.
We all know horticulture is about so much more than just the traditional lower-paying roles that many people think of. There are opportunities to work with new technology (like drones), in sales or to own your own business. Horticulture provides variety to rival any other sector - from plant breeding to food production; or even marketing New Zealand produce to consumers in our export markets. But we need to share this - and we know personal experience is one of the best ways to make it real for students and get them thinking about a career in the sector.
And of course, once we have recruited people to join us, we need to deliver on the promises we have made and help them to grow their skills and careers. Next year Primary ITO will be introducing new qualifications and training programmes that align to the horticulture production career progression pathway to help to do just that.
The new qualification pathway aims to provide a clear guide for people - from school leavers right through to those who are already well-experienced working in the industry - to step through our industry’s qualifications and grow their skills.
The Pathways have been developed in collaboration with our Primary ITO Industry Partnership Groups aligning qualifications and training programmes to industry roles and will continue to be modified to meet changing the skill needs of the sector now, and into the future. The development follows a review of all NZQA qualifications called TRoQ (or the Tertiary Review of Qualifications) which worked to standardise qualification offerings nationwide, and to ensure their relevance with the industries they support.
We would like to thank the industry participants who have invested in the creation of the qualifications and training programmes that suit the requirements of our businesses and attract, grow, and retain our people in horticulture.
More detail about the new horticulture production training programmes is provided below - we know it is going to make a real difference in growing the careers of great people for our sector. “ Kate Longman is national sector manager horticulture and viticulture for Primary ITO.
She joined Primary ITO in this role in May 2017 and is responsible for leading Primary ITO’s strategies and relationships with these sectors. Kate hails from the kiwifruit industry and has extensive experience in production, postharvest, research and in representing the political and commercial interests of New Zealand growers.