Mark Horsfall from Horsfall’s Cardross Vineyard tells us about his business and how MADEC Harvest Trail Services helped recruit the right people to carry out his business.  MADEC thank Mark for his valuable time as he was heavily involved with harvesting and was still able to find the time for this interview.

How did you get into the agriculture business and how long have you had the current business?

Mark Horsfall is company director of Horsfall’s Cardross Vineyard which has been in operation for over 20 years.  The vineyard is located approximately 17km from Mildura, Victoria in the Sunraysia region.  Employment opportunities exist for Table Grape Pickers and Table Grape Packers at the vineyard.  Mark uses MADEC annually to source these workers to assist at the vineyard.  Each season varies however traditionally he employs approximately 20 workers to assist with picking and packing roles.  Mark’s table grape picking occurs from January to March each year.   The business also undertakes table grape pruning which is usually around June/July each year.  Mark normally has his own team complete the pruning requirements, however, with the ongoing restrictions and changes due to COVID, Mark advised that he may need to call on MADEC could assist with recruitment to these roles later in the year. 

What advice would you give people thinking about working in Horticulture?

I would advise they be prepared to give and take when they first start working on a farm. To give the work a real go and enjoy it. Do their homework on the product they will be working with before starting.

What have you done this year to attract workers to your workplace?

I have built an alfresco area, and updated our packing shed. I make a point of sending photos to all workers inquiring about work to show our facilities on the block.

What have you found to be the most beneficial aspect of MADEC Harvest Trail Services?

I like using MADEC Harvest Trail Services because they source workers to meet my requirements ensuring they are suitable and legal.  I have used MADEC Harvest Trail Services for more than 10 years and the team at the MADEC Mildura office are very helpful and obliging.  I have utilised MADEC services this year to advertise job vacancies, mobilise the workforce and provide assistance and guidance through the recruitment process. 

As we all know 2020 was very challenging and continues to be with the recruitment of workers in the industry.  We have managed to pull together a full team ensuring operations continue.  MADEC Harvest Trail Services continually meet my expectations and I will continue to use their services.