Lantra warns MPs of critical land-based skills shortage

The critical skills shortage in the environmental and land-based sectors was due to be highlighted to MPs at Westminster this week when Lantra presented its latest skills assessment research.

Sector skills council Lantra has found that 73 per cent of vacancies in horticultural trades and 43 per cent in gardening and grounds-keeping are difficult to fill. A quarter of those positions remain vacant because of a lack of candidates with the appropriate skills.

The report also emphasised the fact that the UK's food security could be under threat because of the shortage of skilled workers in agriculture and horticulture.

Lantra's skills assessment research is based on a comprehensive review of changes in the sector and of evidence that has emerged over the past year. The report sets out the skills gaps and shortages of the current workforce and also identifies the skills needed by the industry through to 2017.

Lantra was expected to present its research to MPs during a meeting on Wednesday (21 October).

Commenting on the report's key findings, Lantra chief executive Peter Martin said: "This major piece of research gives us all food for thought. We must address these critical shortages in the workforce now and take on board the need for ever-increasing levels of skills."

Challenges such as the combined threats posed by climate change and weakened food and fuel security mean that farmers and growers now need to acquire even higher levels of skills and knowledge to do their jobs.

Lantra's skills assessment research will be followed by an assessment of the quality and quantity of training and education opportunities.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Are tree suppliers seeing the benefit of the health message of trees?

Are tree suppliers seeing the benefit of the health message of trees?

The message that health, the environment and business all benefit from trees is finally getting through, but are nurseries seeing an upturn? Sally Drury reports.

What products are available to help ensure success this planting season?

What products are available to help ensure success this planting season?

Young trees face a tough challenge to get established. Sally Drury looks at some of the best products available to help ensure successful planting projects.



These evergreen trees and shrubs have decorative bark and can flower and fruit simultaneously, says Miranda Kimberley.

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs


Build your business with the latest public sector tenders covering landscape, arboriculture, grounds care, production and kit supplies. To receive the latest tenders weekly to your inbox sign up for our Tenders Tracker bulletin here.

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Horticulture Week Top 50 Landscape and maintenance contractors

See our exclusive RANKING of landscape and maintenance contractors by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS


Free to subscribers, the essential guide for professional plant buyers

Download your copy

Products & Kit Resources