Wales announces 2019 agricultural wage rates

Welsh farmworkers will get about a 2% pay rise from 1 April 2019.

The Welsh government has published a statutory instrument setting out the minimum pay rates for all categories and grades of workers.

Grade 1 workers over the age of 25 will see wages rise by nearly 5% from £7.83/hour to £8.21/hour in line with a scheduled increase in the national living wage.

See also: Scotland to push for minimum wage increase of 4.85% 

However, the percentage increase for more qualified and experienced workers will be closer to 2%.

For example, the rate for Grade 2 workers will rise from £8.29/hour to £8.45/hour (a 1.9% increase), while the rate for Grade 4 employees will go from £9.16/hour to £9.36/hour (up 2.2%).

Rest of UK

The rates in Wales are higher than those proposed in Northern Ireland, which has suggested the minimum rate for a Grade 4 craft worker from 1 April 2019 should rise by 3% to £9.03/hour.

Scotland has taken a different approach, agreeing a single minimum hourly rate of £8.21/hour for all agricultural workers, irrespective of age and duties, with an additional payment of at least £1.25/hour available for workers with an appropriate qualification.

England no longer has an Agricultural Wages Board.

Auto-enrolment

Employers are also reminded that from 6 April 2019, the minimum contribution to auto-enrolment workplace pensions is increasing from 5% to 8% of qualifying earnings.

The 8% is made up of employer and employee contributions, with employers’ minimum contributions set at 3% (up from 2%), though it is possible for the employer to pay a higher amount.

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