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Agricultural apprentices provide an affordable way to the food and Ag industry | State

Susie Birchfield of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania-Center County joined a butcher apprenticeship program when she realized she wanted a new career. Raised in a poultry farm in Juniata County, Susie pursued higher education and taught elementary school, but her meat processing career was always in her mind.

When COVID-19 was a hit, she realized it was an opportunity to change her career and join an industry that needed skilled workers. She enrolled in a butcher apprenticeship at Pennsylvania State University. Today, she is the first woman to work on the processing floor of Peach Foods in Bellville, PA, and hopes to own her own store someday.

Pennsylvania has seven state-certified agricultural apprenticeship programs and two pre-apprenticeship programs, including the Center County program. During the tour, Secretary of Agriculture Russell Reading celebrated these programs and the National Apprentice Week last week.

“Pennsylvania’s agricultural workforce is the key to ensuring that food is distributed from the farm gates to the supper plates. Along the path of National Apprentice Week, the food system functions at all stages of supply. I remember how important skilled farm labor is. Chain. ” “The apprenticeship program trains the next generation of food and agricultural workers for demanding and competitive work.”

Pennsylvania has long faced a shortage of agricultural labor, especially in its agricultural and technology-based roles. Apprenticeship is the future of the industry. Through paid hands-on training, apprentices acquire an affordable skill set that provides a path to meaningful and well-paid work that supports food supply stability. “

Pennsylvania’s $ 132.5 billion agricultural industry fuels more than 593,000 jobs across the federal government, paying nearly $ 33 billion annually, according to the Secretariat’s announcement. Over the next decade, agriculture is expected to face a labor shortage due to the retirement of farmers and workers and the increase in technical jobs.

To support the growth of the food and agriculture workforce, the state PAsmart Invested $ 30 million in initiative, vocational training and science and technology education. The Governor’s initiative supports registered apprenticeship, pre-apprenticeship, and apprentice ambassador network grants to train skilled workers for jobs that are in high demand by schools, students, workers, and businesses throughout the federal state. To support.

“Both pre- and practical training provide valuable services to local and state-wide employees, combining classroom instruction with hands-on skills training and the opportunity to earn during learning,” said the Secretary of Labor. Jennifer Belier said. “L & I estimates that nearly nine out of ten apprentices are hired after they have completed their apprenticeship, and the majority are employed with a starting salary of $ 60,000 or more per year. Before they graduate. To build a direct relationship with the employer. “

According to the release National Apprentice Week Is a national celebration that brings together industry, labor, stock, workforce, education and government leaders to showcase the success and value of registered apprenticeship programs in developing skilled workers and strengthening the economy. The National Apprentice Week was from November 15th to 21st, 2021.

For more information on the Agricultural Apprentice Program and the Labor Development Initiative, please visit: Agriculture.pa.gov..

Agricultural apprentices provide an affordable way to the food and Ag industry | State

Source link Agricultural apprentices provide an affordable way to the food and Ag industry | State

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