Home' NZ Dairy Farmer : February 2011 Contents 38 The Dairyman FEBRUARY 2011
OVER the past few years
the demand for experi-
enced and reliable dairy
farm workers has grown rapidly,
as the industry continues to
To meet the labour shortfall
the industry has become depend-
ent on migrant workers, mainly
from the Philippines.
Filipino dairy farm workers
have been working on dairy
farms outside the Philippines for
several years now, including
large dairy farms in the Middle
East, Japan, Ireland and the UK.
Farmers from around the coun-
try are unable to find suitable
dairy farm workers within New
Immigration Placements Ltd
(IPS), one of New Zealand's old-
est companies specialising in
placing overseas dairy farm
workers with New Zealand
farmers, said the demand had
been strong for dairy farm work-
ers from the Philippines follow-
ing the recovery in milk prices
IPS opened a branch office in
Manila, early 2008 where its
own staff who screen and check
each applicant individually
before submitting them to poten-
tial employers. This ensures
farmers only receive quality
Most of the migrants are com-
ing to New Zealand to stay per-
manently and become residents.
They often bring over their fam-
ilies once they have settled in --
Immigration NZ policies are
supportive by allowing partners
and children to come to live.
Having our own office in
Manila has been of considerable
advantage to New Zealand
employers. Farmers will be sup-
plied a short list of qualified
applicants and then have an
opportunity to do a telephone of
video interview with this appli-
cants of their choice.
Once the employer has select-
ed the applicants that they
require, documentation for work
visas will be arranged. It nor-
mally takes a month for the visas
to be approved from receiving a
job offer from an employer.
The recruitment of skilled
migrants from the Philippines is
regulated by the Philippines
Government through the
Employment Agency (POEA).
All recruitment must be
processed through a licensed
agency, and workers coming to
New Zealand are required to
obtain an Overseas Employment
Certificate before leaving,
which IPS arranges for them.
IPS is accredited with the
POEA to allow this to be
arranged. The POEA oversees
the activities of licensed agents
and may cancel their licenses if
not complying with the laws of
Immigration NZ requires all
applicants to go through strin-
gent medical tests before
approving of work visas.
Applicants' references and qual-
ifications are thoroughly
checked by immigration before
approval of visas, and if there
are any inaccuracies the visas
are denied. Immigration NZ
will only approve work visas if
applicants can provide at least
two years proven work experi-
ence on commercial dairy farms.
Most applicants have animal sci-
ence or veterinary degrees.
Over the years, IPS has sup-
plied hundreds of dairy farm
workers to farmers around New
Zealand, from Northland to
Southland. For most applicants,
farmers are required to obtain
approval from Work & Income
to show that there are no suitable
applicants locally. If the appli-
cant has proven supervisory
experience in various aspects of
dairy farming ranging from
milking to pasture management,
they may qualify under the
Skilled Migrant Category which
will avoid the need to having the
approval from WINZ first.
For further information, to
have references from farmers in
your area, contact: Bruce
Porteous, ph 0800 959-535.
Dairy industry 'relying' on Filipino farm workers
For more info visit:
Contact Cheryl Riddell
P: 06 354 0000
F: 06 354 2412 M: 021 222 0482
Administration enquiries: Christine O'Connor
to SAT 19
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