AHDB helping growers address Brexit labour challenges

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Growers concerned about the future availability and affordability of labour are being urged to join one of four free Labour Efficiency workshops.

The AHDB-hosted events aim to encourage horticultural businesses to adopt Lean and Continuous Improvement performance management principles.

Delegates will leave with a long-term tailored action plan identifying areas of improvements that could be made in the management of their workforce.

Gary Taylor, AHDB Horticulture chairman, who is chairing the events, said: “We know reliable access to affordable labour is one of the highest priorities for growers at the moment and this programme of activity is one of the ways at AHDB that we are helping to address this challenge.”

Neil Fedden, managing director of Fedden USP, who is presenting at the workshops, said: “Using techniques such as Lean and Continuous Improvement mitigates the risk of heavy reliance on seasonal workers and staff engagement and job satisfaction can be significantly improved as a result.

“Workers can also be trained to develop specialist skills using these techniques and so, over time, the overall quality of employees is improved.”

Debbie Wilson, knowledge exchange manager at AHDB Horticulture, said: “We hope for anyone attending these workshops they will be a starting point for a new focus on performance management. We will be facilitating on-going learning and development with delegates by providing self-assessment tools and follow-up meetings to help businesses share their successes and experiences.”

The workshops will take place in: 28 November – East Malling, Kent; 30 November – Stoneleigh, Warwickshire; 13 March 2018 – Lincolnshire and 15 March 2018 – Lancashire. To book a place, visit horticulture.ahdb.org.uk/events.

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Editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer as well as responsibility for the Agronomist and Arable Farmer and Farm Business websites. After 17 years milking cows on the family farm John started writing about agriculture in 1998 and has since written for a variety of publications and has developed a wide circle of contacts within the industry. When not working John is an avid follower of Stoke City.