Industry Reference Committee

The Industry Reference Committee (IRC) was made up of people with experience, skills and knowledge in the agriculture and production horticulture industry, covering a breadth of experience from across relevant sectors.

The IRC acted as a conduit for industry to provide feedback to government about industry trends and skills needs, and has responsibility for overseeing the development of units of competency, skill sets and qualifications for the industry it services.

Throughout the duration of its role as a Skills Service Organisation, Skills Impact provided support services to a group of related IRCs so they could effectively connect and engage with industry about their skill needs. All IRCs were appointed by the Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC). Nominees operated in the best interest of the industry sector.


Meeting Communiques

7 September 2022* Download Communique

17 June 2022* Download Communique

10 December 2021* Download Communique

9 August 2021* Download Communique

9 March 2021* Download Communique 

15 December 2020* Download Communique 

7 October 2020* Download Communique 

21 May 2020* Download Communique 

20 April 2020* Download Communique 

9 October 2019 Download Communique 

8 April 2019 Download Communique 

25 June 2018 Download Communique 

20 April 2018*  Download Communique 

1 March 2018*  Download Communique 

6 February 2018  Download Communique 

16 November 2017* Download Communique 

19 September 2017

27 July 2017

11 July 2017

21 April 2017*

7 April 2017* Download Communique 

11 July 2016

15 April 2016

23 March 2016


*Meeting held via video conference or teleconference.


Committee Membership

Organisation Represented
Organisation Overview
National Aquaculture Council Brian Jeffriess The national peak body representing the interests of the Australian aquaculture industry.
Southern Rock Lobster Limited Tom Cosentino The national peak body for the Australian Southern Rock Lobster Fishery, representing the states of South Australia, Tasmania and Victoria’.
Tasmanian Seafood Industry Council James Garde The peak body representing the interests of wild capture fishers, marine farmers and seafood processors in Tasmania.
South Australian Oyster Growers Association Andy Myers The South Australian Oyster Growers Association supports and represents SA oyster growers at a regional, State and national level. 
Australian Workers Union (AWU) Kade Wakefield Employee representative body for employees working in the aquaculture and wild catch industry.
Department of Primary Industries -Fisheries NSW Andrew Driscoll The Department of Primary Industries (DPI) works to increase the value of primary industries and drive economic growth across NSW. DPI manages a broad range of initiatives from resource to industry, including natural resource management, research and development, pest and disease management, food safety, industry engagement, and market access and competition.
Individual Industry Experts
Required Expertise
Andrew Tabor Expertise in Aquaculture
Franca Romeo Expertise in Wild Catch Fishing
Helen Jenkins Expertise in Aquaculture (crustaceans)
Johnathon Davey (Chair) Expertise in Wild Catch Fishing
Lisa Terry Expertise in Seafood Processing and Wholesaling
Mark Cody Expertise in Aquaculture
Steven Gill (Deputy Chair) Expertise in Aquaculture

Operating Framework for IRCs

IRCs provided the industry engagement mechanism at the centre of training package development (units of competency, skill sets and qualifications). They provided a conduit for industry feedback to government on industry trends and for promotion of VET. The primary purpose of the IRC was to provide advice to the AISC about the skills needs of their industry or sector, based on their experience and expertise.

IRCs performed the following functions, with support by Skills Impact:

  • Gathered general intelligence for their industry sectors to inform advice on training package development and review
  • Oversaw the development and review of training packages in accordance with the requirements of the AISC
  • Oversaw the development of the IRC work plan by the SSO, advising who should be included in the consultation and the type of information to include
  • Provided sign off on the work plan, business cases, cases for endorsement and other submissions for consideration by the AISC
  • Reported to the AISC on progress of its work
  • Promoted the use of VET in the sectors they represent.

Full details of the Operating Framework for Industry Reference Committees (IRCs) can be viewed here.