Initial Sector Workforce Development Plan 2022 for the food and fibre sector

WDPs are a plan for the whole of food and fibre, including all those involved in vocational education and training.

This plan summarises priority areas of focus for vocational education and training for the food and fibre sector identified through feedback from the sector, and existing research and analysis. It proposes actions and focus areas for the year ahead.

The plan acknowledges the opportunities and challenges across the food and fibre sector – attracting and retaining workers in a tight labour market; the role of technology; the environment, sustainability, and wellbeing; and supporting Māori business and learners to be successful. While it includes some specific actions for Muka Tangata, the agenda is one for the sector as a whole. Over the next year, we will use this plan in discussions with industry, providers, learners and tangata whenua to develop industry specific workforce development plans and advice to government on what skill development to fund.

Workforce development plans, a new feature of the vocational education reforms, are intended to provide evidence on the current and future needs of the workforce, and to map out the changes and actions needed within the vocational education system to meet these challenges head on.

The Future of Food and Fibre Workforce report is now available. This report reflects the views of people from the food and fibre sector on the future of the sector, the opportunities ahead, and how we can collectively maximise these.

We commissioned the Food and Fibre Futures project which included a literature review of international trends and developments, interviews with industry experts, and a series of hui in 13 regional centres across the country and with rangatahi online, to hear from the diverse voices in the sector about the issues and choices they see our sector is facing.

The report sets out four possible future scenarios that were developed to illustrate the range of possible future outcomes. We will use these scenarios in our discussions with industry to help identify opportunities and priorities for future workforce development.