Agricultural Wages (Wales) Order 2016

29 February 2016

A new Order will introduce revised pay rates for all grades and categories of agricultural workers in Wales. The Agricultural Wages (Wales) Order 2016 is the first wages Order made under the Agricultural Sector (Wales) Act 2014 and came into force on 26 February 2016.

At present, agricultural workers in Wales are subject to the minimum pay rates specified 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% pay increase based on the 2012 minimum pay rates.

The Agricultural Minimum Wage links pay rates to qualifications through a six grade career structure. The 2016 Wages Order preserves this structure for standard and flexible workers. The 6% pay increase will apply to grades 2 to 6, young workers of compulsory school age, and apprentices. Since 2012, the hourly pay of Grade 1 workers has increased in line with increases in the National Minimum Wage, and now this Order will set the Grade 2p above the current National Minimum Wage at £6.72. Grade 1 is regarded as a transitional grade. The statutory provisions maintain rights for Grade 1 workers who have been employed continually for 30 weeks with the same employer to acquire qualifications that will allow them to move quickly to a higher grade.

The Agricultural Wages (Wales) Order 2016 is intended to be an interim measure and will remain in force until a new agricultural wages Order is made, based on the recommendations of the new, soon to be formed, Agricultural Advisory Panel for Wales. The Panel, once established, will play a fundamental role in supporting the functioning of industry by considering matters related to employment and also skills and career development. The Panel is expected to be fully operational by spring 2016.

There are different rules for agricultural workers in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland; visit GOV.UK for further details.