Peak industry body for Queensland horticulture, Growcom and Australia’s largest digital platform for high school leavers, Year13 have announced a new campaign that will encourage young Australians to consider horticultural work as a gap year option.
Growcom CEO Stephen Barnard said COVID-19 had caused huge disruption to labour supply and the horticulture industry continues to explore new and innovative ways to ensure industry had access to a reliable workforce.
“Through the Gap Year campaign, we are investing in young Australians, providing them with a better preview of the industry and what opportunities are available in Queensland,” Mr Barnard said.
“We are also continuing investment in safe and ethical employers, to ensure workers have the best possible experience in the industry.
“This is an opportunity to establish horticulture as not only a gap year option, but a rewarding career path.”
Year13 is dedicated to empowering young people to follow their passions, also working with government, employers, and educators to bridge the gap in youth employment.
The organisation has quickly established credibility with the 15 to 25-year-old demographic by producing engaging content that discusses the employment, education, and travel-related opportunities available to young Australians.
Year13 Co-Founder and Co-CEO Saxon Phipps said he and the Year13 team are excited about the opportunity this campaign provides as it mirrors the ethos of Year13.
“10 years ago, when we wrote the first business plan for Year13, we envisioned helping young Australians make more informed and considered decisions about their futures while closing the gap between unemployed youth and industries with skill and job shortages,” Mr Phipps said.
“There needs to be more focus on providing opportunities across regional and rural Australia and our partnership with Growcom does exactly that.
“We want to promote horticulture as a fulfilling career while giving young Australians more options of meaningful career pathways.
“I look forward to seeing the success Growcom and Year13 can achieve together.”
As part of the collaboration, participating school leavers will be provided with pre-induction training through FarmReady Hub and assistance to find employment.
Employers wanting to take on school leavers will need to demonstrate their commitment to fair employment practices through Fair Farms Certification or demonstrated commitment to good work practices.
To find out more about the Gap Year campaign, visit
The Growcom Gap Year campaign is funded by the Federal Government through the Harvest Trail Services Industry Collaboration Trial.