The Hodgman Liberal Government is investing $300,000 in developing the skills of Tasmania’s shearers and farmhands who keep our $100 million wool industry thriving.

The Wool Harvesting Training Program ensures industry new-comers have the necessary skills to enter the industry and existing workers have the best up-to-date training.

I am pleased to today announce that through Skills Tasmania the Hodgman Liberal Government is investing $300,000 over the next three years to ensure this valuable program continues.

This training wouldn’t be possible without the matching funding provided by industry through Australian Wool Innovation and the generosity of property owners who host the regular training schools.

Tasmania’s wool is renowned for the quality of its fleeces, from superfine through to carpet wool, and our harvesting procedures. An annual farm gate value of $100 million is a testament to this.

Ensuring our shearers and farmhands have access to the very best training and new techniques is important to continuing the industry’s growth and creating jobs.

Tasmania’s wool industry employs about 200 professional shearers and 160 full time wool handlers and 1000 intermittent workers.

Over the past six years the Wool Harvesting Program has helped up to 70 Tasmanians every year to upskill and gain a Certificate 2 or 3 in either Shearing or Wool Handling.

Good wool harvesting techniques by both shearers and shed hands are critical to delivering the quality product for which Tasmania’s wool industry is justifiably renowned.

It was great to today see first-hand the work of the Wool Harvesting School at Malahide, in North East Tasmania and the impact of our Safe Farming Program too.

Students received a presentation from Safe Farming Tasmania on Work Health and Safety, which is part of our three year Safe Farming Program delivered by our Cultivating Prosperity in Agriculture initiative which is helping to grow the value of Tasmania’s agriculture to $10 billion per annum by 2050.
Jeremy Rockliff, Minister for Education and Training