People on the move

People on the move in the grain and cropping sector

Grain Central, September 23, 2020

Who is on the move in the Australian grain and cropping industry? Catch up with our latest update of industry appointments, rewards, retirements and achievements.

  • Morrison named GrainCorp CFO
  • McCabe replaces Dabinett as GPSA chair
  • McCalman heads Merredin Farms
  • McMeekin, Pattison join ETG
  • Herbert joins Lachstock Riverina
  • Broadbent appoints Ryan
  • Saks leads ROBE commodities
  • Davey joins WeedSmart team
  • New soil, land commissioner for WA
  • Emerging grain leadership program
  • Applications open for science, innovation awards

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Morrison named GrainCorp CFO

GRAINCORP has appointed Ian Morrison as chief financial officer (CFO) to replace Alistair Bell.

Ian Morrison

Mr Morrison was appointed as interim CFO in July 2020 following the departure of Mr Bell.

He has been with GrainCorp since 2011 in senior finance roles across all areas of the company, including as CFO of the grains division.

He previously worked with KPMG in the United Kingdom and Australia.

“Ian is a proven and respected business leader within GrainCorp. He has strong financial and commercial expertise as well as a deep understanding of GrainCorp’s trading, marketing and operations units,” GrainCorp chief executive officer Robert Spurway said.

“We are pleased to be appointing such a high-calibre internal candidate who will bring relevant experience and ensure continuity and focus across our financial and commercial teams.”

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McCabe replaces Dabinett as GPSA chair

HAMLEY Bridge grower Adrian McCabe has been appointed chair of Grain Producers South Australia (GPSA), replacing Parilla grower Wade Dabinett who held the position for the past four years.

Mr McCabe, who grows cereals, pulses and canola, was first appointed to the GPSA Board in December 2016 and has been vice chair since 2018.

He said he was keen to continue the work GPSA had started with the SA Grain Industry Blueprint and build on the successful advocacy regarding SA’s moratorium on genetically modified crops.

“GPSA has had some significant policy wins over the past few years with the outgoing board and I want to see us continue that trajectory with the incoming board as the voice for South Australian growers,” he said.

“We will continue to work hard on the GM issue on a council by council basis to ensure growers across the state have the freedom of choice in the crops they grow.”

Mr Dabinett said he was proud to see the continuing development and professionalism of GPSA in advocating on behalf of the industry.

“Achieving reform in the area of GM crops has been a high priority for me as chair and, while the policy outcome wasn’t perfect, it delivers on the end goal of providing farmers with the ability to choose the varieties that best fit their farming system,” he said.

Outgoing GPSA chair, Wade Dabinett, and incoming chair, Adrian McCabe.

The GPSA Board also farewelled directors Peter Cousins and Tanja Morgan and welcomed new directors James Heaslip, Appila, John Gladigau, Alawoona, and Nick Hillier, Bordertown. David Malpas, Lucindale, was re-elected to the Board.

Mr Heaslip is a sixth-generation farmer, was part of GPSA’s inaugural Emerging Leaders Program intake and has a Diploma in Chartered Accounting.

Mr Gladigau is a partner in Bulla Burra, a collaborative farm which crops 8,500 hectares annually to cereals and legumes in the northern Mallee region of SA. He is also a 2007 Nuffield Scholar, a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and has been a member of the SA Grain Industry Blueprint Steering Committee.

Mr Hillier has operated a mixed family farm for nearly 30 years and has his own consulting business. He has previously served in an agricultural policy advisory role to government.

These directors join newly appointed independent director Dr Steve Jefferies, who is the former Grains Research and Development Corporation managing director.

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McCalman heads Merredin Farms

MERREDIN Farms has appointed Ron McCalman as general manager of its 200,000-hectare operation in Western Australia’s eastern wheatbelt.

Ron McCalman

The land was bought last year by the Saudi Agricultural and Livestock Investment Company (SALIC) from John and Julie Nicoletti and associates, and Merredin Farms has continued with the previous owners’ land use by running Merino sheep and cropping in excess of 90,000ha.

Mr McCalman was previously chief executive officer of Agfarm, which was wound up this year, and prior to that held senior positions with Emerald Grain and GrainCorp.

He will be based at Merredin.

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McMeekin, Pattison join ETG

EXPORT Trading Group (ETG) has expanded into Australia to focus on bulk and containerised grain exports to Asia.

Foundation personnel are Peter McMeekin as operations and support manager and Matthew Pattison as trading manager.

Both are based in Toowoomba, Qld, and previously worked for COFCO.

Mr McMeekin is a market commentator and has most recently been an independent consultant, while Mr Pattison was Cargill Australia’s sorghum trader.

Under ETG Commodities Asia-Pacific regional head Luke Mason in Singapore, Mr McMeekin and Mr Pattison will operate in a division separate to ETG Australia, which trades and processes pulses, and last year bought the Wimpak facility in Victoria.

ETG started in the 1960s in Africa, and this century has expanded into operations in Asia, the Americas, and Europe.

Mitsui is a part owner, and the company is headquartered in Dubai.

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Herbert joins Lachstock Riverina

LACHSTOCK Consulting has appointed Lachlan Herbert as senior commodity advisor for growers and corporates in its central region.

Lachlan Herbert

From 2015 until recently, Mr Herbert worked for Riverina Oils and Bio Energy to build its trading and risk-management capabilities during a growth stage for the company, and previously spent 10 years with Cargill Australia.

“Lachy brings with him 16 years of grain market experience and has held roles right along the grain supply chain from accumulation to oilseed processing, though to export sales of finished goods,” Lachstock CEO Nick Carracher said.

“Lachy’s breadth of experience provides him with an extensive understanding of global and local markets which allows him to analyse and interpret opportunities for our client base.”

Mr Herbert is based in Wagga Wagga, NSW, where he runs a mixed farm with his family.

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Broadbent appoints Ryan

CHS Broadbent has appointed grain merchant Bobbi Ryan to its Toowoomba team.

Bobbi Ryan

Ms Ryan’s work in agriculture stems from her involvement with family farming in north Queensland, and roles in grain accumulation in Toowoomba with companies including COFCO.

“I’m excited to be part of the team and am focussed on providing exceptional outcomes for growers and building on the strong relationships we have with our communities.”

Ms Ryan will be working alongside merchant Rob MacDougall and traders Steve Bruggemann and Tim Murray.

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Saks leads ROBE commodities

RIVERINA Oils and Bio Energy has appointed Lawra Saks to head its team of seed, meal and oil merchants with a focus on commodity strategy.

Lawra Saks

Originally from Scotland, Ms Saks moved to Australia to work for Cargill in roles across the value chain from origination to exports to crush merchandising.

She has since worked in shipping for Wilhelmsen in Australia and London on dry bulk and in a global business strategy role.

“ROBE is an innovative and forward-thinking company, and the Goodrop oil and Protein Meal differentiation projects are particularly exciting for me to be a part of,” she said.

Ms Saks will be relocating from the UK to Australia in coming weeks and will be based at ROBE in Wagga Wagga, southern NSW.

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Davey joins WeedSmart team

CHRIS Davey has become the latest member of the WeedSmart team as the new southern extension agronomist, joining Peter Newman in the western region, Greg and Kirrily Condon in the east and Paul McIntosh in the north.

Mr Davey has been advocating planned and sustainable weed control programs with growers on the Yorke Peninsula in South Australia for many years and has been a great supporter of the WeedSmart message.

His first responsibility was to coordinate the 2020 WeedSmart Week which focussed on a three-day event around Clare in early September.

WeedSmart program manager Lisa Mayer said having an extension agronomist of Mr Davey’s calibre dedicated to sharing the WeedSmart message with growers in southern Australia offered many opportunities to ramp up the pressure on herbicide resistant weeds in the region.

Chris Davey

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New soil, land commissioner for WA

HYDROLOGIST and natural resource management scientist Cecilia (Cec) McConnell has been appointed as Western Australia’s new Soil and Land Conservation Commissioner.

Ms McConnell brings 25 years of experience working in leadership roles in government and the private sector to the position.

The Commissioner’s role, which is responsible for administering the Soil and Land Conservation Act 1945, includes preventing land degradation, promoting soil conservation and educating landholders and the general public about sound land management.

Ms McConnell, who will be based with the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, succeeds Andrew Watson who served as Commissioner for 16 years before his retirement earlier this year.

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Emerging grain leadership program

APPLICATIONS close shortly for the Australian Grain Leaders Program (AGLP), a leadership program created especially for emerging grain growers and industry professionals.

Thirteen alumni of the AGLP have gone on to grains industry board positions, including current GrainGrowers chairman Brett Hosking and AgForce Grains president Brendan Taylor.

“The program is the perfect opportunity to take a step off farm and work on your leadership style and professional goals,” GrainGrowers general manager, leadership and events, Kaitlin Commins, said.

“104 graduates have gone through the program with the skills acquired enhancing their own personal journey and helping develop their leadership skills so that they return to their local communities as leaders prepared for the future.”

More information and how to apply: https://www.graingrowers.com.au/leadership-events/australian-grain-leaders-program/

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Applications open for science, innovation awards

WITH individual grants of up to $22,000 on offer, young agricultural innovators are being encouraged to apply for the 2021 Science and Innovation Awards for Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Acting chief scientist (agriculture) with the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Dr Robyn Cleland, urged applicants to start working on their applications now.

“The Science Awards is a rewarding and valuable grant opportunity that funds innovative projects that will address long standing issues in the agriculture sector,” Dr Cleland said.

The Science and Innovation Awards is a competitive grants program open to 18-35 year olds to undertake new and creative scientific-based research to benefit Australia’s agricultural industries.

There are 10 individual award categories available, with the opportunity to share in up to $220,000 in grants.

Applications close at 5pm AEST on Friday 2 October 2020.

More information and how to apply: awe.gov.au/scienceawards or email [email protected]

 

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