West Michigan Works! hosting agribusiness job fair

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Hiring managers from Herbruck’s, Hearthside Food Solutions, Kellogg’s, Michigan Turkey, Kent Quality Foods, Dykhuis Farms Inc. and Roskam Baking Company will be participating in the job fair. Courtesy West Michigan Works!

West Michigan Works! will host a virtual agribusiness job fair from 9 a.m.-noon Thursday.

Hiring managers from Herbruck’s, Hearthside Food Solutions, Kellogg’s, Michigan Turkey, Kent Quality Foods, Dykhuis Farms Inc. and Roskam Baking Company will be participating.

Job seekers will be able to talk with the various employers about their skills and qualifications and how they can meet their immediate hiring needs.

“While farms and fields are a big part of agribusiness, it only makes up about half of the jobs throughout the state,” said Joe Thiry, business solutions manager, West Michigan Works!. “Agribusiness encompasses every aspect of the food and beverage business from start to finish, including production and distribution processes.”

The agriculture industry is the second-largest industry in Michigan. One of five Michigan workers is employed in agribusiness. The agricultural industry, which includes farming and food production, accounts for nearly 26,000 jobs and $300 million in labor income in the region.

“If the past year taught us anything, it’s that everyone needs to eat, and our local food systems are the most reliable. Even during economic booms and busts, our farms need to be able to produce food, which makes agriculture a near recession-proof industry,” said Allison Brink, executive director of Michigan Allied Poultry Industries. “Our family poultry farms, and all agriculture-related businesses, need more young talent interested in all aspects of ag so that we can continue to grow and produce healthy food here in Michigan.”

There are 11 agriculture positions ranging from equipment operators and truck drivers to maintenance supervisors and mechanics that are included in the 2021 West Michigan Works! Hot Jobs List, an annual report that showcases the fastest-growing and most in-demand jobs.

“One of the priority issues for the West Michigan food processing sector has been workforce and talent development,” said Marty Gerencer, executive director of West Michigan Food Processing Association. “Some companies are deciding not to expand and increase sales due to lack of available workforce and the talent needed to fill livable wage jobs in their company.”

For more information about the agribusiness industry and to register for the virtual job fair, click here. The registration deadline is Wednesday.

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