New visa for foreign workers a positive step for dairy

A new dedicated agricultural visa announced today by the Commonwealth Government has been welcomed by Australian Dairy Farmers (ADF), the peak policy and advocacy organisation for dairy farming in Australia.

“The visa will help resolve workforce shortage issues in agriculture. It will enable industry to better match workforce needs to foreign worker recruitment and reduce visa processing times,” says ADF president Terry Richardson.

An agriculture visa was part of ADF’s submission to the National Agriculture Workforce Strategy. ADF has been working with the Government through the National Farmers Federation to develop the visa.

“The workforce shortage is a critical issue for dairy farmers,” says Mr Richardson. “The ADF’s position has been that the dairy industry should be able to tap into migrants to fill specific job roles in the short term.”

Mr Richardson says the Government’s decision to initially limit the visa to people from ASEAN countries is a good first step, but ultimately the visa needs to be offered to all people across the world,” Mr Ricardson says.

“We will continue to work with the Government on the specific design elements of the visa. This includes responsibilities of organisations such as ADF for efficient and effective delivery,” says Mr Richardson.

“Ideally, this visa program will source workers to replace the backpacker market – a long-standing source of casual labour on Australian farms that has been disrupted by travel restrictions caused by Covid-19.”



About Australian Dairy Farmers

Australian Dairy Farmers is the recognised national policy and advocacy organisation working to improve profitability and sustainability of dairy farming in Australia. Representing Australia’s six dairying states, Australian Dairy Farmers state membership comprises representatives from Victoria, Tasmania, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia. These state bodies are known as State Dairy Farmer Organisation (SDFO). Australian Dairy Farmers provides the SDFOs with support and representation on a national level.


For further information, contact:

Mark Paterson


Tel: 0409 411 110


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