Agri-food companies wanted at Norfolk and Suffolk careers honest

6:19 AM February 4, 2022

Meals and farming companies battling labour shortages and a looming expertise hole have been urged to showcase their trade’s profession alternatives to younger folks at an occasion subsequent month.

The Norfolk and Suffolk Abilities and Careers Pageant will likely be held on the Norfolk Showground on March 9-10 – making a “welcome return” after final 12 months’s cancellation because of the pandemic.

A file 7,000 younger folks, aged 14-24, are booked to attend the occasion, organised by a coalition of organisations together with the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Affiliation (RNAA) and the Suffolk Agricultural Affiliation (SAA).

However whereas there are already round 50 exhibitors from key East Anglian enterprise sectors – together with leisure and tourism, building, vitality, monetary providers, and the general public sector – organisers really feel the agri-food trade is under-represented.

A direct attraction has been made to corporations on this sector, the place post-Brexit labour shortages have change into a key concern in current months, significantly for fruit and vegetable growers and meat producers.

A letter has been despatched to agri-food companies to ask them to participate, signed by RNAA managing director Mark Nicholas, SAA chief govt Phillip Ainsworth and Chris Starkie, chief govt of the New Anglia LEP (Native Enterprise Partnership).

It says: “Illustration of the agri-food sector has not been as robust appropriately in earlier years and, this 12 months, we intend to make sure that with the help of dedicated employers like your self, the agri-food sector is represented in essentially the most partaking and galvanizing method attainable.

“That is the second to make a distinction for the following era. We very a lot hope that you’ll be a part of us to assist present and display the vary of expertise and profession paths within the agri-food sector.”

Mr Nicholas added: “Some sectors are extra superior than others in how they go about demonstrating the number of expertise and careers obtainable, and we really feel the agri-food trade might be higher represented.

“There’s a real-time have to get extra folks engaged and within the careers and expertise obtainable, and they should give the following era of kids the chance to seek out out extra about completely different careers.”

Mark Nicholas, managing director of the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Affiliation, has urged for extra agri-food companies to hitch the 2022 Norfolk and Suffolk Abilities and Careers Pageant
– Credit score: Danielle Booden