The B.C. government has committed more than $55,000 for a new labour market partnership project with meat processors in the province to help identify their labour needs.
The BC Association of Abattoirs is leading the Meat Processing Industry Labour Engagement project with support from the Province. The goal of this project is to bring together registered abattoir operations and butcher shops in B.C. to identify their unique labour needs, as well as factors that shape their workforce. This project is expected to complete in December.
The meat processing industry is a major contributor to B.C.’s agrifood and seafood sector. The sector is one of eight key drivers in the BC Jobs Plan. British Columbia has one of the most diverse agrifood industries in Canada, producing more than 200 agriculture commodities and 100 seafood species.
The project announced today is funded through the Sector Labour Market Partnerships program under the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement. The program helps employers understand and respond to changing labour-market demands, ensuring that training and education programs in B.C. are aligned with industry’s labour-market needs and priorities.
Earlier this month, more than 35 experts from around North America shared their knowledge and opinions about increasing food supply security during the BC Agrifood and Seafood Conference: Growing the Future Together, held on Nov. 14 and 15, 2016, in Kelowna.
Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation and Minister Responsible for Labour –
“With nearly one million jobs expected in the province by 2025, we have been engaging with our BC Jobs Plan sectors to help ensure employers can meet the growing labour market demand. The meat processing industry is part of our diverse agrifoods sector and this partnership with the BC Association of Abattoirs is an example of our government’s commitment to work with our sectors and industries to keep B.C.’s economy strong and growing.”
Greg Kyllo, MLA for Shuswap –
“The meat processing industry has operations throughout B.C. The new Sector Labour Market Partnership project between the B.C. government and BC Association of Abattoirs will not only help employers and employees who work in this industry, but it will also benefit many communities in our province that are served by meat processors and producers.”
Nova Woodbury, executive director, BC Association of Abattoirs –
"The partnership developed between abattoirs and butcher shops has been instrumental in understanding the industry's unique labour needs and factors that shape our workforce in B.C. This has been a very positive and encouraging project, and the B.C. meat industry is excited and optimistic about addressing the labour issues. The support received will enable us to move towards a sustainable, constructive and long-term labour solution to maintain a viable industry and keep B.C. meat in B.C."
- Sales of B.C. agrifood products topped $13 billion for the first time in 2015 as the momentum builds toward the B.C. government’s goal of growing the sector to a $15-billion-a-year industry by 2020.
- Between the farm gate and the kitchen table, around 1,800 processing businesses contribute 70% to the sector’s more than $13 billion dollar value.
- B.C.’s agrifood and seafood sector directly employs around 55,000 British Columbians.
- Each year, the government invests more than $7.5 billion in education and training.
- Over the next 10 years, to better align its annual investment to meet emerging labour market needs, B.C. plans to redirect $3 billion of its training investment to focus on skills and programs for in-demand jobs.
BC Abattoirs Association: http://bcabattoirs.org/
Sector Labour Market Partnerships Program: www.workbc.ca/sectorlabourmarketpartnerships
BC Agrifood and Seafood Conference: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2016AGRI0070-002296
BC Agrifood and Seafood Strategic Growth Plan: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/farming-natural-resources-and-industry/agriculture-and-seafood/strategic-growth-plan.pdf
BC Jobs Plan: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/bcjobsplan/
B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint: https://www.workbc.ca/Training-Education/B-C-s-Skills-for-Jobs-Blueprint.aspx
B.C. 2025 Labour Market Outlook: https://www.workbc.ca/Statistics/Labour-Market.aspx