UK apprenticeship schemes launched for farmers and growers

By Michelle Perrett

- Last updated on GMT

AHDB and NFU join forces to create farmer apprenticeship schemes
AHDB and NFU join forces to create farmer apprenticeship schemes
Three apprenticeship schemes have been launched in the UK to develop the next generation of skilled farmers and growers.

The country’s Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), National Farmers Union (NFU) and industry employers have joined forces to set standards for the three apprenticeship schemes.

Two new standards for apprenticeships as either a crop technician or stockperson have been agreed, using feedback from some of the largest and most productive employers in the industry.

The new standards, which are known as Trailblazers, offer the chance to increase knowledge and skills, but also build behaviours.

A third standard, for a packhouse line leader, is also nearing completion and is focused on supervisory staff.

“Improving skills is a key part to unlocking productivity gains on farm. These new standards will help ensure that even the newest recruits to farming and growing businesses can support the drive to improve performance while they work,” ​said AHDB senior skills manager Tess Howe.

“Over the past three years, we’ve worked closely with the industry and we now need more employers to step forward and work with training providers to bring new entrants into their businesses. The flexible nature of the new Trailblazers schemes also means that they can be used as a structured way of upskilling existing workers.”

Guy Smith, deputy president at the NFU, said: “These new apprenticeship standards will play a huge role in attracting new talent to our industry, and allow us to develop our skills.

“Apprenticeships which provide training to an industry-agreed standard offer farmers and growers an excellent way to recruit new people and develop them while they work, helping to ensure businesses can continue to be productive, profitable and progressive.”

Smith said any members that were interested in the schemes should speak to a local land-based college or private provider.

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