Crop Farm Workers perform routine tasks in producing crops such as fruit, nuts, grains, vegetables and mushrooms.

A Year 10 Certificate, Certificate I, or a short period of on-the-job training is sometimes needed, but is not necessary to work in this job. Around one in three workers have Year 12 as their highest level of education.

Tasks

  • planting trees, seeds, seedlings, roots, bulbs, vines and other plants using hand tools and farm machines
  • building trellises for climbing vegetables and vines
  • operating farm machines to cultivate, fertilise, spray and harvest fruit, nuts, grains and vegetables
  • spraying trees, vines and other plants with chemicals to control weed growth, insects, fungus growth and diseases
  • thinning, weeding and hoeing row crops, and pruning trees and vines
  • irrigating land for crop growth
  • selecting and picking fruit, nuts, grains and vegetables according to size and ripeness, and discarding rotting and over-ripened produce
  • grading, sorting, bunching and packing produce into containers
  • loading filled fruit, nut, grain and vegetable containers onto trucks

Job Titles

  • Fruit or Nut Farm Worker
  • Fruit or Nut Picker
  • Grain, Oilseed or Pasture Farm Worker
  • Vegetable Farm Worker
  • Vegetable Picker
  • Vineyard Worker
  • Mushroom Picker
  • Other Crop Farm Workers
  • Fruit or Nut Farm Worker

    Performs routine tasks on a fruit or nut farm such as cultivating and fertilising soil, and planting, irrigating and pruning crops. May spray chemicals on crops to treat disease and pests.

    Specialisations: Orchard Worker

  • Fruit or Nut Picker

    Harvests fruit and nuts and prepares produce for distribution.

  • Grain, Oilseed or Pasture Farm Worker

    Performs routine tasks on a grain, oilseed protein, or pasture farm such as cultivating and fertilising soil, and planting and irrigating crops. May spray chemicals on crops to treat disease and pests.

  • Vegetable Farm Worker

    Performs routine tasks on a vegetable farm or market garden such as cultivating and fertilising soil, and planting and irrigating crops. May spray chemicals on crops to treat disease and pests.

  • Vegetable Picker

    Harvests vegetables and prepares produce for distribution.

  • Vineyard Worker

    Performs routine tasks on a vineyard such as cultivating and fertilising soil, planting, training and pruning vines, and picking grapes.

  • Mushroom Picker

    Harvests mushrooms and prepares produce for distribution.

  • Other Crop Farm Workers

    Includes Coffee Plantation Worker, Flower Buncher or Picker, Hop Farm Worker, Lavender Farm Worker, Sugar Cane Planter, Tea Plantation Worker, Tea Tree Farm Worker, Turf Farm Worker

Fast Facts

  • $777 Weekly Pay
  • 25,900 workers Employment Size
  • Moderate Future Growth
  • Entry level Skill level rating
  • Higher unemployment Unemployment
  • 63.5% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 40.9 hours Average full-time
  • 38.5 years Average age
  • 31.7% female Gender Share

The number of Crop Farm Workers grew very strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to grow over the next 5 years:
from 25,900 in 2018 to 27,200 by 2023.
Job openings can come from new jobs being created, but most come from turnover (workers leaving).
There are likely to be around 22,000 job openings over 5 years (that's about 4,400 a year).

  • Size: This is a large occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was above average in 2017.
  • Location: Crop Farm Workers work in many regions of Australia. Many work in South Australia or Queensland.
  • Industries: Most work in the Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing industry.
  • Earnings: Full-time workers earn around $777 per week (lower than the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • Full-time: Many work full-time (63.5%, similar to the all jobs average of 68.4%).
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 40.9 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 39 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 31.7% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2018 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2023.
YearNumber of Workers
200825000
200924100
201025400
201124500
201223400
201318800
201420600
201520500
201625100
201732700
201825900
202327200

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsCrop Farm WorkersAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings7771230

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing92.6
Wholesale Trade4.0
Manufacturing1.6
Rental, Hiring and Real Estate Services0.8
Other Industries1.0

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateCrop Farm WorkersAll Jobs Average
NSW18.831.6
VIC26.626.2
QLD28.519.7
SA17.26.7
WA4.910.8
TAS3.62.0
NT0.51.1
ACT0.01.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketCrop Farm WorkersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-196.2-5.25.2
20-2414.2-9.99.9
25-3425.4-23.623.6
35-4415.2-21.721.7
45-5417.1-20.820.8
55-5910.9-8.88.8
60-646.4-6.06.0
65 and Over4.8-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationCrop Farm WorkersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate0-8.68.6
Bachelor degree7-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma0-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV7.5-18.918.9
Year 1241.1-18.718.7
Years 11 & 1024.3-17.717.7
Below Year 1020.1-8.18.1

A Year 10 Certificate, Certificate I, or a short period of on-the-job training is sometimes needed, but is not necessary to work in this job.
Around one in three workers have Year 12 as their highest level of education.

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Agriculture, Horticulture and Conservation & Land Management VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Crop Farm Workers who are reliable, hardworking and physically fit.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Mechanical

    52% Important

    Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

  2. Personnel and Human Resources

    49% Important

    Recruiting and training people. Managing pay and other entitlements like sick and holiday leave. Negotiating pay and conditions.

  3. Food Production

    47% Important

    Planting, growing, and harvesting food (both plant and animal), including storage and handling.

  4. Transportation

    46% Important

    Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.

  5. Administration and Management

    45% Important

    Planning and coordination of people and resources.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 45-2092.02 - Farmworkers and Laborers, Crop.

Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  1. Handling and Moving Objects

    65% Important

    Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

  2. Controlling Machines and Processes

    64% Important

    Operate machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).

  3. Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events

    59% Important

    Comparing objects, actions, or events, looking for differences between them or changes over time.

  4. Getting Information

    58% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  5. Performing General Physical Activities

    57% Important

    Doing things that use of your arms and legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 45-2092.02 - Farmworkers and Laborers, Crop.

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