Victorian Food Industry Training Board - Your independant voice

Archive for September, 2009

Where you are going, you need to take your workforce with you

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

AgriFood Skills Australia
From Agri-Foods:

AgriFood Skills Australia is a Federal Government not-for-profit company working to help you get the skilled workforce you need to keep your business rolling now and into the future.

You, your supply chain partners or industry association can benefit from a range of services offered by AgriFood, from time to time, including: free training needs analysis, business skills training; innovative training exemplars, workplace development initiatives, English Language , Literacy and Numeracy support, and assistance with applying for government grants programs. ASA is also an important player in Productivity Partnerships Programs. Our endorsement can strengthen your case for government funding.

Our Training Needs Analysis (TNA) to enterprises like your own across Australia, is free of charge. In harmony with your operational needs, trained professionals will:

  • identify your businesses’ current and future skill needs;
  • determine the training requirements of the workforce or segments of it; and
  • develop a training plan and strategies to implement the plan.

The TNAs, are fully-funded by AgriFood, who can then assist you secure subsidised training through government programs. Certain enterprises may also qualify for more in depth support and subsidised training, in exemplar projects. These help to demonstrate the need for increased government support for enterprise-focused, customised training.


For further information and to express interest, please contact Michael Claessens at AgriFood Skills Australia (02) 6163 7200 or

Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry’s Australian Food Statistics 2008 Report

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

From the Australian Food News website:

A new report highlighting that Australia’s food and grocery industry continues to grow despite the global financial crisis has been welcomed by the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC).

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Tony Burke released the findings on Friday in the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry’s Australian Food Statistics 2008 report.

Click here for more information on the Aus Food News website.

Click here to download the report [PDF: 1MB].

Worrying scenario dominates Agri Food Conference

Tuesday, September 29th, 2009

A national agrifood conference in Sydney has heard that the world demand for food and fibre will double within a single lifetime, eclipsing climate change as the world’s next great challenge.

The conference, hosted by AgriFood Skills Australia, explored this scenario as well as the jobs crisis threatening Australia at its national conference in Sydney this week before a broad cross section of the agrifood industry, including rural industries, food, meat, seafood and training. AgriFood CEO Arthur Blewitt said the agrifood industry looked for better outcomes from the national training system, and the availability of skilled and well trained workers was one impediment to the agrifood industry’s continued development and growth.

The director of the CSIRO Sustainability Agriculture Flagship, Dr Peter Carberry, discussed the issue of food resources that he said dwarfed the world’s climate change crisis – Carberry said most people would have grown up and gone about their working lives while the world’s ability to meet its food and fibre needs in aggregate was largely taken for granted.

However, world hunger – a persistent failure of humanity – was usually viewed as a problem of development, distribution and equity of access – not one of global demand outstripping the ability of the world’s natural resources to meet global demands for food, feed, fibre and perhaps fuel. Agricultural research aimed at productivity gains was often seen as a matter of private interest – not global need, he said.

The CEO of the Australian Food and Grocery Council, Kate Carnell also provided an assessment of the broad business, production and opportunities of the food processing sector and the impediments restraining its growth and performance.

Click here for more information on the Food Week website.

Bakers of Tomorrow

Monday, September 28th, 2009

Biav Baking StallThe BIAV Petey Pie Making Factory is one of the most popular exhibitions at the Royal Melbourne Show.  It is run by The Baking Industry Association of Victoria (BIAV), which is a peak employer organisation, representing baking industry manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers, the hospitality and catering industries, and a wide range of allied traders.

The Factory features current TAFE students and owners and staff from bakeries around the state, cooking hundreds of pies, sausage rolls and vanilla slices. The lucky general public get to not just watch the demonstrations, but to buy the final products and consume with relish! In keeping with the country coming to the city, country bakers from regions as diverse as Mooroopna, Tatura, Eaglehawk, Mansfield, Wodonga and  Beechworth, participated.

What better way to show off the baking industry’s skills, passion and commitment! The VFITB staff had vanilla slices for morning tea the following morning and gave a resounding ten out of ten. Click here to see photos of the event.

BIAV will also be hosting the Cosmopolitan Baking Industry Convention runs from 4 – 7 November 2009 at the Hilton Hotel in East Melbourne. The industry is diverse and growing and employment roles include bakers, pastry cooks, cake decorators, customer service personnel, managers and teachers. Click here for more information [PDF: 280KB].

Reflecting the community and producers’ tastes for new and exciting breads, Richard Jenkins, for the national AgriFood Skills Council, is exploring artisan baking units for the Training Package.

Food Maintenance Training Project

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009

Heinz Echuca ConsultationOn behalf of Skills Victoria, the VFITB began a project in June that develops training pathways to meet the contemporary needs of the maintenance function of the industry. Casey van Berkel is working as the Project Consultant and would appreciate any feedback on this work during September.

See our projects page for more information.

New Supervisor/Technical Officer Level Food Processing Industry Flexible Training

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009

RMIT is currently seeking input from industry and prospective students for a 2010 pilot intake of part time industry-based students to its Cert 4 Food Science and Technology program. See flyer for information.

Contact Sam Cutri,

Food Science & Technology Coordinator,

Tel: 9925 4876

Submission Draft Food Technology Management

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009

The Vocational Graduate Certificate in Food Technology Management is nearing completion. We are currently concluding the development of two specialist electives – one in the field of dairy technology and the other in confectionery manufacture. These will be added to the draft for circulation to the steering committee on the 22 September 2009. The current draft which is given here shows the course structure and major details. A number of areas are highlighted where codes, credit matrix and copyright details need to be finalized. If you have any comments on the draft please send them to the course writer – David Trembath on or speak to him directly on 03 9386 2892.

Click here to download the draft.

Industry Feedback for Validation Draft New Food Processing Training Package – Urgent – deadline: 25 Sept

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009

The validation draft of qualifications and units of competency for the Food Processing Training Package is now available for downloading on the AgriFood Skills Australia website.

We would be pleased if you could click on the above link and provide feedback. Comments are required by the 25th September 2009. If you provide feedback, please cc us so we can keep abreast of what Victorian industry is saying.

For further information or enquiries please contact the project consultants below:

Richard Jenkins
Richard Jenkins and Associates
Tel: 02 95794483
Fax: 02 9586 1610
Mobile: 0408 022857


Kerrie Clarke
Tel: 02 4782-9414
Mobile: 0404 847204

New Website!

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009

VFITB has a brand new website! Please take some time to browse the site and provide us with any feedback you have. As with any website there are bound to be a few teething problems, if you come across any issues while browsing the site please let us know by emailing

If you have any other feedback please let us know in the comments below!


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