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In 2016–17, the Australian red meat and livestock industry directly employed just over 191,800 people*. In Casino, more than 12% of employed people aged 15 years and over work in the meat industry**, compared to only 0.2% state-wide and 0.3% nationally. It’s big business in the Northern Rivers of NSW to say the least.
As Australia’s largest meat processing cooperative and one of the largest employers in the Casino shire, Northern Co-operative Meat Company Limited (NCMC) is a key industry player. And as a business-savvy company, it understands that to remain competitive it must keep employees at the top of their game through regular upskilling.
This is why NCMC has partnered with Australia’s largest education provider, TAFE NSW, to roll out leadership, management and work, health and safety training to many of its 1,000 staff.
TAFE NSW Head of Skillspoint, Technology & Business Services, Dr. Geethani Nair, says the organisation is proud to deliver a training program tailored specifically to an influential meat industry contributor.
“TAFE NSW provides innovative business-to-business training to an increasing number of large organisations via TAFE Enterprise, which launched in June 2018,” she says.
“A rapidly changing technology landscape is continuously shifting skills and knowledge requirements, driving industries to strategically align their workforce to suit. Ongoing training and professional development is not only critical to operating an efficient, best-practice company in this environment, it is crucial in keeping in-house teams engaged. We are equipping many of Casino’s key workers to be part of the workforce of the future by offering customised training that positions them well to deal with industry’s changing skills needs.
“Our tight partnership enables us to design courses that deliver skills and knowledge to better prepare NCMC’s employees for the future. A TAFE NSW trainer resides in their onsite training room to deliver the courses every week over 2019. What we deliver is embedded in the NCMC comprehensive training strategy.”
CEO of NCMC, Simon Stahl says, “We are committed to providing more than ‘just a job’, we’re offering career opportunities.”
“Our Certificates II, III and IV in Meat Processing are equivalent of any trade qualification. In addition, we offer a wide spectrum of career opportunities beyond meat processing, including engineering trades, IT, administration, quality assurance and hide tanning. What people don’t realise is meat works is one of the most dynamic businesses operating in Australia today, with so many trade and career opportunities under the one roof.”
The first round of employees graduated from the training courses in December and the next round begins on 4 February. Course elements include leadership, working safely with heights, meat handling, meat processing, working in confined spaces and much more. Available qualifications include Certificate III in Meat Processing and Certificate III in Work, Health & Safety; these in particular enable the pursuit of a full qualification (Certificate IV) should staff wish to continue with their studies.
For more information on TAFE NSW courses visit www.tafensw.com.au or call 131 601.