THE GRANITE BELT REGION
SEASONAL HARVEST WORK
BEST Employment provides Harvest Labour Services through its office in Stanthorpe, QLD. We link job seekers with seasonal harvest work in the Granite Belt regions, where growers often have difficulty finding sufficient workers at harvest time.
The Harvest Trail Offers a great way for people to travel around Australia while working and earning money. Australian job seekers and travellers visiting Australia, who hold appropriate work visas, are eligible for harvest work.
You should be fit, flexible, reasonably strong and active. You may have to work in the rain or in 35 degree heat so be realistic about your ability and understand that the farmer needs workers who are cost effective for his business. You can be required to carry and climb a ladder, carry a heavy picking bag from your shoulders or bend over all day cutting vegetables or picking capsicums.
You should have sufficient funds for at least 3 weeks as circumstances can change quickly and are affected by the weather. Some accommodation places require a week’s rent in advance. It is important to contact us prior to relocating to obtain up to date information.
INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYERS
BEST Harvest Labour service is a specialist harvest recruitment agency and offers a free service to horticultural producers from Tenterfield to Warwick and Stanthorpe west to St George. We can find pickers, packers, tractor operators, forklift operators, farm hands and many more. We check all visas and work with employers to provide the most suitable workers for you.
Call us to discuss your harvest requirements and see what we have to offer. This is a free service, provided by experienced staff with many years experience in dealing with farm labour. Contact Linda or Sharon on 07 4681 6200 or email
HARVEST WORKER FAQS
WHERE IS STANTHORPE?
Stanthorpe is in South East Queensland, 220km south west of Brisbane on the Queensland/NSW border. It has a population on 11,000 people and is part if an area called the Granite Belt- named for a unique landscape of large granite rocks. At an altitude of 950m Stanthorpe has the reputation of being the coldest place in Queensland.
WHEN SHOULD I GO THERE?
Harvesting takes place between October and May when there are opportunities for seasonal workers. From June to September the demand for workers is very limited. Climate, market prices, crop size and the number of people looking for work can impact on the amount of work available.
Because of the large variety of fruit and vegetables grown in Stanthorpe there are several ‘peak’ periods depending on the crop. In general February – April is the busiest time.
HOW DO I GET THERE?
There is no public transport in Stanthorpe and farms are located in a radius of approximately 30km from the town. Some caravan parks and hostels provide transport, for a fee, for guests. Your own transport is preferable. Contact us for more details.
WHERE CAN I STAY?
You will need to organise private accomodation as most farms in Stanthorpe do not provide a place to stay.
There are 5 caravan and camp grounds in Stanthorpe as well as 2 backpacker hostels. Several motels and hotels also offer budget seasonal worker accommodation and there are many share houses.
For comprehensive information on accommodation please contact the Stanthorpe Visitor Information Centre on 07 4681 2057 or BEST Employment Harvest Labour on 07 4681 6200. From February to April there is an increased demand for accommodation and it is advisable to book in advance.
AM I ELIGIBLE TO WORK IN AUSTRALIA?
You are eligible to work as a harvest worker in Australia if you are an Australian citizen or have a valid working visa. You will also need a Tax File Number and an Australian bank account.
WHAT SHOULD I TAKE TO WORK?
- Water. Take 3-4 litres per person per day when hot
- Food for the day
- Sun protection
- Wide brim hat
- Long sleeved, loose fitted shirt
- A Raincoat
- Work boots or fully enclosed shoes
- Warm clothes
- Bedding. You should be prepared for temperatures as low as 5 – 10 degrees celsius in summer and temperatures as low as 0 degrees in winter.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT TO EARN?
You may be paid on an hourly rate or by how much you pick (called ‘piece rate’ or ‘contract’).
Piece rates vary depending on crop (eg apples by the bin, tomatoes by the bucket) and the type of picking eg picking apples for colour and size will be at a higher rate than stripping the tree. Check with us for up to date hourly wage rates. Most farms pay on a weekly basis.
WHAT CAN I DO FOR FUN IN STANTHORPE?
There are many places to visit in close proximity to Stanthorpe including 4 outstanding National Parks and numerous wineries.
The nearest cinema is in Warwick (60 km north). Stanthorpe has numerous restaurants and hotels some of which provide music at weekends. There is an art gallery, library, internet café, swimming pool, gymnasium, squash courts and facilities for many other sports.
At the beginning of March on every second year Stanthorpe presents its famous Apple and Grape Festival. Further information on things to do while visiting Stanthorpe can be obtained from the Stanthorpe Visitors Information Centre on 07 4681 2057.