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New partnership helps build the capability of next generation stock agents

31 January 2024

RMA Network and Wodonga TAFE partner with MLA to deliver Next Generation Agency and Supply Chain training for the Livestock and Wool Industry in a 3 year project.

The ongoing delivery of Stock and Station Agency and Supply chain training run by RMA Network and Wodonga TAFE has been enhanced with Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) signing a three-year funding agreement under the MLA Donor Company (MDC) Service provider and supply chain training program.

With the program in its 14th year and now with over 300 attendees participating, it is seen as the most comprehensive training for new agents and supply chain service providers in Australia. Focused on the operational understanding of the required livestock & wool industry interactions between producers, agency, processors, feedlots, exporters and the associated service providers, the program allows new entrants to become effective employees for their employer faster.

Simone Dand, Program Coordinator with Wodonga TAFE, will become a shared resource with RMA Network under the new MLA arrangement.

"Over my time with this program we have seen attendees improving their skills to a level that we believe takes 3-5 years off their learning curve," Ms Dand said.

"It also helps attendees create a ready-made network from all over Australia within the group and with the many subject matter experts involved in the program delivery."

Chris Howie, CEO of RMA Network representing independent Stock and Property agents across Australia, said:

"The arrangement with MLA opens the door for new or potential staff, irrespective of shirt color, to be involved with this program that becomes a foundation for their career. Simone has a skill set that is unique to the Livestock and Wool sectors which enhances the delivery of this program providing real industry benefits."

"Our goal is to deliver a level of professionalism based on understanding the complexities of day to day agency which in turn helps new entrants avoid simple mistakes," Mr Howie said.

"This program has access to the best skill sets in Australia who give up their time to teach Next generation Agent and Supply Chain participants."

Keely Kovacevic, MLA Project Manager, Adoption Capability Building, said the project provided strong value to the Australian red meat and livestock industry.

"MLA has identified a real value in this project with the Agency and Supply Chain training creating a natural point of contact with livestock and wool producers all over the country," Ms. Kovacevic said.

"The natural fit of training new entrants to make use of the information available within MLA and Integrity Systems Company will help with adoption at a producer level which benefits everyone involved."

"The program has an extensive range of topics covered within the course including livestock production, genetics, animal welfare, finance, sustainability, transport, quality programs, wool, safety as well as the understanding of the day to day requirements within the livestock, wool and animal health industry. This program is a fantastic development opportunity for all involved in our industry with a common learning cause being the main driver."

Simone said: "The next course starts on the 3rd of March at Wodonga and provides the opportunity to complete a full Certificate IV in Agriculture (AHC40122) or attend the workshop-only format."

"The structure of this course is 2 x 4-day residential workshops approximately 5-6 months apart, and the cost is inclusive of accommodation and catering. Each workshop sees a group of new participants join those returning for their second session, allowing great networking opportunities. Intakes are capped at 15 to create the best learning experience. The March workshop has a small number of slots available, please contact me if you require more information."