At present, agricultural workers in Wales are subject to the minimum pay rates set by the last Agricultural Wages Order issued by the now abolished Agricultural Wages Board in 2012, except for Grade 1 which is set at the current National Minimum Wage.
Under the new Wages Order, workers will receive an average 6 per cent pay increase based on the 2012 minimum pay rates, while retaining the grade structure of the 2012 Order. Grade 1 workers who have been employed continually for 30 weeks with the same employer are entitled to acquire qualifications that will allow them to move quickly to a higher grade.
The new rates are:
- Grade 1: £6.72/hour
- Grade 2: £7.39/hour
- Grade 3: £8.12/hour
- Grade 4: £8.72/hour
- Grade 5: £9.23/hour
- Grade 6: £9.97/hour
"The career structure, increased minimum pay rates for young workers and apprentices, and the provisions that support training paid by employers are designed to help combat skills shortages in the sector," Evans said. "Having a well-trained and well-motivated workforce is key to ensuring the long term viability and success of agriculture in Wales."
The new Wages Order is intended as an interim measure until a new agricultural wages order is made based on the recommendations of the Agricultural Advisory Panel for Wales, due to come into operation in spring.