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STRONG GROWER ADVOCACY CONTINUES AT GPA

Grain Producers Australia has welcomed experienced WA farmer Duncan Young's election to the GPA Board, to continue strengthening grass roots grower representation and national policy advocacy.


Barry Large, was also re-appointed GPA Chair at a board meeting held immediately after the GPA AGM today in Melbourne, to continue delivering strong and stable national leadership for growers.


Mr Young replaces Gerard Paganoni who served two, two-year terms and has held important roles including Chair of the GPA Audit & Risk Committee and the Grain Trade Australia Technical Committee on Plant Breeding & Innovation.


Mr Young farms at York in the Avon Valley of WA’s western wheatbelt and has been involved in the family farming business for about 30 years, currently growing cereals and pulses over 3600 hectares.


He’s also highly regarded as an early adopter of new technology in his cropping enterprise and for providing strong advocacy to help enable WA growers to gain access to crop biotechnology. HERE


His previous roles include serving as President of the WA Farmers Grains Council, where he also represented WA growers on the GPA Policy Council, for national policy and advocacy.

Picture: GPA Chair Barry Large (left) and the three scholars involved in GPA and Nufarm’s Paddock to Parliament Grains Advocacy program, Dr Jessica Hyles, Luke Milgate and Campbell Dalton.


“Duncan’s work representing WA growers since the early 2000s had delivered great benefits, in applying his vast knowledge and practical experience in areas such as crop biotechnology, sustainability, soil health, climate resilience, farm technology and more,” Mr Large said.


“We’re excited to have someone with Duncan’s expertise and experience representing growers – especially on matters regarding grains RD&E and technology – on the GPA Board.


“I’d also like to thank Gerard for his strong representation for growers and contribution to GPA’s strong results and growth over the past four years.”


Other appointments from the GPA 2023 AGM include the re-election of GPA Southern Grower Director Andrew Weidemann and Northern Grower Director Matthew Madden.


As per 15.1 (j) of the GPA Constitution, Mr Weidemann nominated for election to renew the process of having one grower director from each region retire at each election.


Mr Large said the AGM coincided with the GPA Policy Council meeting also being held this week to continue discussing current policy and advocacy priorities for Australian growers.


He said GPA’s 2023 Annual Report was also accepted by members at the AGM, which showed the depth of GPA’s work over the past year. HERE


“Once again GPA’s policy and advocacy activities have occurred in the backdrop of another record grains harvest in Australia,” he said.


“In each of the past two years, we’ve seen record returns of about 70 million tonnes, estimated at about $28 billion. Growers have been central to this extraordinary production period that’s also made a significant economic contribution to rural communities and national economy.


“Everyone deserves credit for their continued hard work and resilience in producing another good year that’s worth celebrating, as we look optimistically towards another one.”


Mr Large said stable leadership and experience of the GPA Board and Policy Council is a key feature of the group’s ability to manage and respond to different challenges and opportunities.


“This consistent approach means we’re able to remain focused on our core goals, to provide strong representation and an influential grower voice on national issues.


“I’d like to acknowledge and thank each of the GPA Board Members for their invaluable support and contributions to national representation, whilst maintaining the significant workload required to manage their own farm businesses, during this period of high productivity.


“Our Policy Council members and their professional staff have also done a great job – whilst managing local issues in each state – and also deserve credit and thanks for their efforts.


“Our members ensure GPA can continue to engage positively and effectively to serve our role as a Representative Organisation (RO) under the PIRD Act, representing levy-paying grain producers on key RD&E activities, to the Grains Research and Development Corporation.


“And our responsibilities on biosecurity to Plant Health Australia and on grain quality and market access, with the National Residue Survey (NRS) and work on MRLs.


“These roles and responsibilities are also supported by GPA’s various committees – the GPA Pesticides and Technology Sub-Committee, GPA Biosecurity Committee and GPA Sustainability Taskforce – which provides input and members’ views, through to the GPA Policy Council.


“I’d again like to thank each of the individual committee members who’ve provided their input into managing the different issues we’ve need to respond to during the past year.


“Of note this year is the positive progress, to improve our engagement and collaboration with GrainGrowers Ltd, who we share the RO role with to GRDC. The strength of this relationship and our ability to work together can help deliver better outcomes for growers, with stronger advocacy and leadership.”


Mr Large also welcomed the three scholars involved in GPA and Nufarm’s Paddock to Parliament Grains Advocacy program, Campbell Dalton, Dr Jessica Hyles and Luke Milgate, who joined in with this week’s events in Melbourne. HERE


GPA 2023 Highlights

• National mental health partnership with Nufarm, Rural Aid and Lifeline and Brad Hogg

• Launched new Paddock to Parliament Grains Advocacy Scholarship with Nufarm

• Continued advocacy on ACCC grain market competition inquiry/federal election priorities

• Strong biosecurity advocacy and management, with GPA Biosecurity Committee/PHA

• ZP50 mouse bait emergency use permit extended, to enhance grower crop protection

• Strong communications and media engagement focused on grower priorities and advocacy

• Launched GPA Sustainability Taskforce to increase policy/advocacy engagement

• Ongoing commitment to GPA Training and lifting industry safety standards

• Renewed progress for Grains Australia and consolidation of ‘industry good’ functions.


ENDS

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