Farming industry facing wage crisis?

Author
Laura Heathcote,
Publish Date
Tue, 19 May 2015, 5:00PM
Photo: stock.xchng
Photo: stock.xchng

Farming industry facing wage crisis?

Author
Laura Heathcote,
Publish Date
Tue, 19 May 2015, 5:00PM

UPDATED 8.40pm: Federated Farmers believes farmers advertising seemingly low paid jobs are misrepresenting the true value of the job.

This follows CTU President Helen Kelly's tweets, which claim jobs being advertised on Fonterra's website, are poorly paid or even below the minimum wage.

Kelly said almost all of the jobs advertised with pay rates on Fonterra's website were poorly paid or below the minimum wage.

She claimed many farm workers were vulnerable and isolated, and needed an industry agreement on wages and conditions.

"Some farmers are very concerned others are in denial and just think they work hard and so should everybody else," Kelly said.

In response, Chairman for Federated Farmers Dairy Andrew Hoggard, stated that while they accepted some farmers do pay poorly, most farmers don't advertise the true value of jobs.

He believed they usually didn't include the accommodation that came with a job, and would over estimate the number of hours someone might work.

"When they talk about what the hours would be, [farmers] are talking about those maximum hours they'd face during the springtime, which isn't indicative of the whole year," added Hoggard.