A DAIRY processor has proposed a solution for managing the labour shortage all along the dairy supply chain - a SA Dairy University.
Golden North managing director and Dairy Industry Association of Australia SA representative Peter Adamo said a centralised learning hub, based in SA, could help train a labour force in all aspects of dairy production, as well as on-farm tasks.
Speaking at the recent SA Dairy Summit in Adelaide, Mr Adamo raised the suggestion Lot Fourteen - the former home of the Royal Adelaide Hospital, which has been earmarked by the state government as an "innovation neighbourhood" - could incorporate the training facility, with courses from tafeSA and other training sources, specially targeted for the dairy sector.
The issue of attracting a "skilled and motivated" workforce was one of the topics raised during the summit as a potential barrier to the growth of the state's dairy industry.
Mr Adamo said the hub could cover all aspects from people management, business management, logistics and processing, as well as critical on-farm skills.
He said it would also help both sides of the industry - processing and production - learn more about each other, with future farmers given tours of factories and processors to spend time on-farm.
"It would support the whole dairy industry," he said.
"It's a great stepping stone to aligning dairyfarmers and processors."
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Mr Adamo said both sides of the industry had faced issues trying to find a skilled workforce.
"We're based in a regional town and we have the issue of securing the right skillsets," he said.
With the state government aligning food manufacturing as one of its key priorities, there were potential synergies.
Mr Adamo said it also had the potential to create job prospects for up-and-coming workers, as well as benefiting the dairy industry.
He said the hub could even be an idea that attracts interstate and international students.
"We are trying to grow the dairy sector and want to be represented as number one for best quality and milk price in Australia and achieve a premium price for our product," he said.
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