GrainGrowers’ National Policy Group is made up of 15 growers from three major grain growing regions in Australia.
In 2018 NPG will meet next on 17-18 October (Dubbo).
Bruce Schwartz runs a mixed farming operation (predominantly grain) at Biniguy, northern NSW, in partnership with his wife, Julie, and son, Brad. Bruce uses Controlled Traffic Farming and yield mapping in a minimum tillage and no tillage winter crop rotation. He has more than 40 years’ involvement in the grains industry with extensive local, state and national grain industry networks to draw upon in his service to growers.
Keith managed the Romani Pastoral Company’s northern properties including Windy Station for more than 12 years. Windy Station is a 20,000 hectare property on the Liverpool Plains: with almost 10,000 ha cropping and a cattle enterprise with 12,000 head of cattle. Keith retired from Windy however he was later engaged as a private consultant for Romani. He is passionate about agriculture and has a long history of representing growers on industry committees, including four years with the GRDC Northern Panel. He is currently a Board Member of the NSW North West Local Land Services.
Ian is a grain and cotton farmer from Narrabri, NSW, farming up to 8,000 ha of wheat, chickpeas, faba bean and cotton each year. After completing a degree in Economics at Macquarie University in Sydney, Ian worked for several years with ConAgra in Sydney, before returning to manage the farm in 2000. Ian is passionate about improving the logistics of grain movements in Australia and maintaining Australia’s strong reputation as an international wheat exporter.
Terry and his family run a Merino sheep and grain farming enterprise at Tottenham NSW. He has driven changes that have improved the profitability and sustainability of farming in his area. He believes the priority issues for the industry are infrastructure investment, grain classification, setting receival standards, the management of industry-good services and the promotion of Australian grain.
Paul has farmed with his wife, Sue, at Mingenew in Western Australia for 41 years, growing a variety of crops. Paul brings to the NPG a wealth of experience, including membership on the GRDC Western Panel. His priorities for the industry are to assist in overcoming barriers to farming profitability and sustainability; to promote agriculture in a positive light to encourage participation by the younger generation; to reduce red tape; and to improve telephone and internet communication to enable growers to advance their business capabilities.
Michael has been involved in grain production for more than 30 years. During that time he has become adept at grain marketing in both domestic and international grain markets. Michael has also been an active representative in his community, regularly attending local farming and community groups' meetings. He is passionate about reducing the impact of negative influences that affect the way farmers do business.
Kallum has served Western Australian growers through several active representational roles on WAFarmers. He is currently Grains Council Representative for the Central Great Southern Zone. Prior to this appointment, Kallum was the Young Farmers Representative on WAFarmers Grains Council for three years. In 2015 Kallum nominated for a position and was elected to the WAFarmers Board. After completing his degree in agribusiness at the Muresk Institute, Kallum returned to the family farm at Katanning in 2009.
Frank has 25 years’ experience of owning and managing a farming enterprise in the central wheat belt of Western Australia. His priorities include greater encouragement of investment in research and development across all grain regions; work to increase supply chain capacity from paddock to end user to enhance and develop markets in the Asian region and the subcontinent; and support for the adoption of information technology to aid farming enterprises.
Tristan operates a 5,500 ha cropping enterprise at Buckleboo in South Australia. Tristan is passionate about agriculture and the challenge that has been given to farmers to feed the world in a way that is sustainable given the earth’s finite resources, and in a way that is safe and enjoyable for employees. He considers the search for and adoption of new practices to always be a driver, and has an ongoing role within the Buckleboo Farm Improvement Group committee.
Richard runs a mixed farming operation at Cookamidgera, south east of Parkes, NSW, with his two brothers. He uses Controlled Traffic Farming no-tillage practices in the winter cropping program. He runs a self-replacing Merino flock and first-cross lamb enterprise, and Angus cattle. He has a strong agronomy and grain marketing background with more than 15 years’ experience and is passionate about developing the long-term strength of the Australian grains industry.
Bob, with wife, Carolyn, and sons, Robert and Dermot, operate a cropping and livestock enterprise at Winchendonvale which is some 60 km north of Wagga. Bob also operates Westend Water, a pumping business which requires him to travel throughout a large part of NSW and Victoria. He brings to bear his experience and broad range of skills from being a grain and livestock producer, contractor and businessman to the resolution of industry issues brought before the National Policy Group.
Cameron and his wife, Amanda, grow grain, operate a hay contracting business and work on a family farm at Boort, Vic. Cameron is keen to grow his business and further develop share-farming and collaboration arrangements. He is a part of the AgriEducate team of farmers (www.agrieducate.com.au) helping to increase understanding between city and country, and represents young people in agriculture on the Victorian Farmers Federation's Young Agribusiness Professionals (YAPs) committee.
Emma is a grain and livestock producer in central NSW. She holds a Masters in Environmental Business Management and provides consultancy services to farm businesses. Emma chairs the regional peak body for Landcare, and participates on the Regional Development Authority Central West. She is passionate about regional Australia, with a particular interest in highlighting agricultural opportunities for Australian farmers, such as value adding to current enterprises and access to skilled labour for farms.
Mark is a family farmer in Kikoira, NSW, with 30 years of experience in grower representation, and skills developed from his years in the military and community leadership. For 10 years Mark also served on the NSW Farmers Executive Council and was also the Chairman of the Grains Committee for four years. Mark is keen to see the development of grassroots policy direction and the maximising of tangible benefits and advocacy for GrainGrowers' members.