Diversity the key for GRDC western panel

The West Australian
Rohan Ford with a lupin crop.
Camera IconRohan Ford with a lupin crop. Credit: Supplied by Subject

Graingrowers in the western cropping region are set to benefit from the diversity in expertise, knowledge and experience that has been achieved with the appointment of members of the Grains Research and Development Corporation’s Western Regional Panel for the next two years.

The panel includes three new members, whose fresh insights and differing backgrounds will complement the perspectives and skill sets of those members who have been reappointed for another term.

GRDC chairman John Woods said the new panel was well equipped to serve the interests of grain growers.

“The regional panels play a critical advisory and strategic role in informing GRDC investments in research, development and extension to create enduring profitability for Australian grain growers,” he said.

Dunn Rock grower Peter Roberts will continue as GRDC Western Regional Panel chairman.

Mr Roberts welcomed incoming members Fiona Gibson, a Mingenew grower and applied economist, agronomist Michael Lamond and Binnu grower Rohan Ford.

“The new panel members join those who had been reappointed for another term — agronomic and agribusiness adviser Chris Wilkins, Ravensthorpe grower Andy Duncan, Mingenew grower Darrin Lee, Munglinup grower Gemma Walker, Merredin grower Jules Alvaro and wheat geneticist Greg Rebetzke from CSIRO,” he said.

Dr Gibson is an applied economist with the University of WA’s School of Agriculture and Environment and is a grower at her family’s 6000ha crop and livestock operation in Mingenew, while Mr Ford farms east of Binnu and is passionate about investigating and working with the soil.

Mr Lamond started his career in agronomy in areas including herbicide resistance, herbicide systems with minimum tillage, legume rotations, pasture systems, soil acidity and crop variety evaluation.

Mr Roberts also paid tribute to outgoing panellists Mingenew grower Paul Kelly, agronomy and farming systems specialist Mike Ewing and agricultural consultant Bill Ryan. “These outgoing panellists, who each have decades of industry experience, made an outstanding contribution to the panel over several years,” he said.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails