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Assist agricultural crop establishment

Unit Descriptor This competency standard covers the assistance provided to others in preparing for agricultural crop establishment. This assistance is likely to be under routine supervision with intermittent checking. Competency at this level requires the application of limited knowledge and skills to a range of agricultural crop establishment tasks, including assistance with vehicle and machinery preparation and in some cases i.e., sugar, the handling and planting of a range of planting materials (billets). The work undertaken is usually within established routines, methods and procedures.

1 . Prepare for agricultural crop establishment operations
  1. Instructions about planting are interpreted and clarified with the supervisor.

  2. Machinery, equipment and tools are selected and prepared for the task being undertaken.

  3. OHS hazards are identified, risks assessed and reported to the supervisor.

  4. The environmental implications of the crop production plan are identified and discussed with the supervisor.

  5. Suitable personal protective equipment is selected, used and maintained.

2 . Prepare the site for crop establishment
  1. Old crop and other waste materials are removed and disposed of in full consideration of environmental implications.

  2. Soil treatment/amendments are applied according to soil test results and the supervisor's instructions.

  3. Site is worked according to the crop production plan.

  4. Crop protection is implemented according to enterprise guidelines.

  5. The planting pattern is marked out according to the crop production plan.

  6. Machinery, equipment and tools are operated according to enterprise guidelines.

3 . Carry out establishment operations
  1. Planting material is selected according to the type of crop and enterprise quality standards.

  2. Planting material is treated according to the crop and supervisors instructions.

  3. Planting material is handled and transported to the site with no signs of transport damage.

  4. Planting is carried out according to the planting plan.

4 . Complete establishment operations
  1. Tools and equipment are cleaned and sterilised according to the manufacturers specifications, enterprise procedures and regulations.

  2. All containers, leftover fluids, waste and debris are disposed of safely and appropriately.

  3. All required workplace records are completed accurately and promptly in accordance with enterprise requirements.

Key CompetencyExamples of ApplicationPerformance
How can information be collected, analysed and organised?Ideas and information relating to preparation, planting and crop care, and problems encountered, should be discussed with other members of the work team and the supervisor.1
How are ideas and information communicated within this competency?Enterprise work procedures, such as a daily planting plan should be consulted, interpreted and applied to crop establishment activities with further clarification sought from the supervisor where necessary.1
How are activities planned and organised?Materials, tools, equipment and work activities for crop establishment routines may need to be arranged around seasonal requirements and there may be some responsibility for co-ordinating work activities with other members of the work team.1
How are problem solving skills applied?Crop establishment activities may involve working with other members of a team to complete operations within the daily work routine.1
How are mathematical ideas and techniques used?Calibrating seeding equipment and determining quantities and application rates for treatment or fertiliser will require mathematical applications.1
How is use of technology applied?Problems relating to site preparation, crop planting, treatments, machinery and equipment, workplace safety, and other team members may arise during the establishment of crops, which may require problem-solving skills.1
How is team work used within this competency?Technology may be applied in the preparation, use and maintenance of agricultural equipment and machinery used for land preparation, seeding, spreading of fertiliser or other crop treatments.1

Range Statement

What agricultural crops does this unit cover?

Agricultural crops covered by this unit include wheat and coarse grains, cotton, grain legumes, oilseeds, sugar, temperate and tropical pastures.

What instructions may be relevant to this standard?

Instructions may include Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), company policy and procedures in regard to crop establishment, specifications, work notes, Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS), manufacturers instructions, product labels, or verbal directions from the manager, supervisor, or senior operator.

What machinery, equipment and tools are likely to be used?

Machinery, equipment and tools may include tractors and associated land preparation and seeding equipment, cultivators, fertiliser spreaders, seeding or planting machinery, bagged or bulk seed, fuel, field tool boxes, cane knives, and planting trailers.

What OHS hazards may be associated with crop establishment?

Hazards may include use of machinery, moving machinery and machinery parts, plant debris, chemicals and hazardous substances, manual handling, solar radiation, dust, and noise.

What are the environmental implications associated with agricultural crop establishment?

Environmental implications may include the contamination of off-site ground water or soils from solids, debris, nutrients or chemicals; land disturbance, spread of noxious weeds and water run-off.

What personal protective equipment may be required to undertake turf renovation?

Personal protective equipment may include hat, boots, overalls, gloves, goggles, respirator or face mask, hearing protection, and sunscreen lotion.

What activities are associated with assisting with agricultural crop establishment

Agricultural crop establishment includes preparation of machinery, tools and equipment, assisting with land preparation tasks, (ploughing, seeding, cultivating, land shaping and forming) and communicating with other staff regarding the progress of work.

How may the waste materials be disposed of?

Waste disposal may include disinfestation, ploughing organic waste into the soil, mulching or composting of plant material, bagging and removal of seed heads, and disposing of noxious or poisonous material at approved disposal sights.

What soil treatments/amendments may apply to this standard?

Soil treatments/amendments may include gypsum, lime, organic matter, fertilisers, or the planting of a temporary or permanent cover crop.

What does working the site include?

Working the site may include any sustainable production technique that produces a clean, weed free paddock of appropriate tilth ready to receive the crop.

What type of crop protection may be required for crop establishment?

Crop protection may include wind protection such as permanent shelter belts or temporary plantings of cereals, bana grass or sudax; and mulch, including straw, cover crop or any vegetative material.

What types of planting material may be used to establish a crop?

Planting material may include wheat and other coarse grain seed, legume seed; pasture seed, cottonseed, oilseed, and cane as billets or whole sticks.

How might planting material be treated before planting?

Pre-plant treatments may include fungicide dips or fungicide dusts for seeds.

What treatments may apply to the care of young plants?

Treatments may include pest and disease prevention and control, weed prevention and control, frost, fertilisers, and mulch.

Evidence Guide

What specific knowledge is needed to achieve the performance criteria?

Knowledge and understanding are essential to apply this standard in the workplace, to transfer the skills to other contexts, and to deal with unplanned events. The knowledge requirements for this competency standard are listed below:

What specific skills are needed to achieve the performance criteria?

To achieve the performance criteria, appropriate literacy and numeracy levels as well as some complementary skills are required. These include the ability to:

Are there other competency standards that could be assessed with this one?

This competency standard could be assessed on its own or in combination with other competencies relevant to the job function.

Essential Assessment Information

There is essential information about assessing this competency standard for consistent performance and where and how it may be assessed, in the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package. All users of these competency standards must have access to the Assessment Guidelines. Further advice may also be sought from the relevant sector booklet.