Radical simplification of food and fibre qualifications

In a hearing with NZ Parliament’s Primary Production Select Committee on Thursday 4 May, Muka Tangata presented an update on our work over the past 18 months.

We shared our recent publication A New Approach to Learner Pathways, which details our work to radically simplify qualifications standards and micro-credentials in the food and fibre sector and improve the speed to market of these programmes.

Our industry-specific Workforce Development Plans for the 14 industries in the food and fibre sector that we represent have been put online. Included in these plans are six sector-wide actions that Muka Tangata are focused on for the next year to meet the needs of the sector now.

“We are excited about this opportunity to make education and training within and for the food and fibre sector dramatically more relevant and accessible, and drive improvements in productivity and workforce outcomes.” Jeremy Baker, chief executive, said.

We know that the number of trainees in the food and fibre sector have been dropping for years, and part of the reason for that is the total workforce was dropping. Muka Tangata works to best support employers and learners/employees to meet their needs now.

At the same time, we are working to remove barriers to learning and improve the recognition of the skills that people already bring to the workplace and training by making it easier for people to take their skills and qualifications with them as they move within or beyond the sector.

Muka Tangata work alongside providers to support the delivery of programmes. We are also working with employers to understand their needs and support their ongoing learning as well, especially with regards to health and safety.

Questions from committee members included creating or fixing qualifications so that career pathways are clear to all students, how we talk with farmers to ensure those working on the farm can continue to learn and have the time to do that, and how Muka Tangata are working with the other WDCs where there are similarities and share common principles.


The full livestream of our presentation and discussion with the Primary Production Select Committee can be viewed here: Primary Production Select Committee hearing