People on the Move: Appointments, retirements, achievements

Jon Condon, 06/12/2019

Beef Central publishes an occasional summary of appointments, departures and achievements occurring across the red meat and livestock supply chain. Send details for entries to

  • Victoria’s Gary Hardwick to chair AMIC
  • New senior management roles settled for merged Nutrien
  • New chairman, board members for Wagyu Association
  • Metcalfe to head ‘mega’ ag department
  • Milne bids farewell after eight years as AHA chair
  • Life membership for NSW cattle breeder

Victoria’s Gary Hardwick to chair AMIC

VICTORIAN processing industry veteran Gary Hardwick has been elected the Australian Meat Industry Council’s new chairman for the next four-year term.

Gary Hardwick

Together with his wife Vicki, Mr Hardwick established and operated Hardwick Meatworks in Kyneton processing beef and lamb for export and domestic markets. The business is now managed by their sons Luke and James. Mr Hardwick has worked in the processing industry for more than 40 years, and has served a previous term as AMIC chairman a decade or so ago. A qualified accountant, Mr Hardwick has served on multiple industry boards, sharing his experience in the production, processing and retail sectors of the red meat industry.

He replaces Lachie Hart of Queensland’s Stockyard Beef, who has served as chairman since 2015, overseeing a period of change and modernisation for the organisation and industry.

“It’s an honour to take on the role of AMIC chair once more, and to build on the work that Lachie has guided over the last four years,” Mr Hardwick said. “His leadership and vision have ensured I will be taking reins of an organisation with much already achieved in representing our industry. I look forward to building on this and being a strong advocate for our members and our industry.”

Robert Constable, from Roberts Meats, a member of AMIC’s National Retail Council, was elected deputy chair.

Other members of the new AMIC board include:

  • Roger Fletcher, Fletcher International; Noel Kelson, Midfield Meats; and Terry Nolan, Nolan Meats (National Processor Council)
  • Trevor Hill, Bruce’s Meat & Poultry; Rodney Sellers, Sellers Quality Meats; and Ray Kelso, Barrow Lane Butchery (National Retail Council)
  • Franz Knoll, Barossa Fine Foods; Greg Smith, D’Orsogna Ltd (National Smallgoods Council).

“Our industry is going through a period of great change, with many challenges and opportunities to be addressed and capitalised on. I wish the new board well, and look forward to supporting them in this new chapter of the Australian Meat Industry Council,” Mr Hart said.

AMIC CEO Patrick Hutchinson said under the leadership of Mr Hart, AMIC had been able to strengthen and amplify its voice for members, as well as establishing six clear priority areas around access to labour, animal welfare, market access, food regulation, small business management and energy efficiency.

New senior management roles settled for merged Nutrien

Senior staff from both the Landmark and Ruralco sides of the newly merged agency business are included in the new senior management team announced by Nutrien Ag Solutions recently.

Managing director Rob Clayton said the full operational integration of the two legacy businesses would take perhaps 12 months to complete, as will the full implementation of the Nutrien Ag Solutions brand.

“Over time, it is our intention to bring Landmark and Ruralco together under one name and to streamline operations to deliver better value and innovation to a greater number of Australian growers,” he said. CRT will retain its individual brand, as will the many joint venture businesses across the country that are now part of the Landmark-Ruralco family.

Among the key appointments announced recently:

Andrew Slatter

Andrew Slatter – General Manager Agency. Mr Slatter was previously the executive general manager for Northern Australia for Ruralco. Prior to joining Ruralco in 2018, he was the chief financial officer for the Australian Agricultural Co, and spent six years as head of agribusiness with ANZ Bank. He will move to a new role leading and setting the strategy for the Nutrien businesses across the combined organisation. Kym Gunn, GM Wool, Mark Brooke, GM Landmark Harcourts, and Bill Pardy, National Key Accounts Manager, will report to him.

Peter Weaver – General Manager Water. Mr Weaver will remain in his current position and is charged with leading Water, a new division for Landmark.

Ian Perry – General Manager Finance and Insurance. Mr Perry will lead the Finance and Insurance team, with the Landmark Rural Finance and Insurance functions reporting into his portfolio.

Nutrien has divided its regional operations across Australia into three zones, each headed by a regional manager:

  • Robert Payne will manage the North East Region, encompassing Central and Northern NSW and Queensland. Mr Payne will be returning to this role following his secondment to the Integration Management Office where he led the integration process. Acting region manager Damon Ferguson will return to his role as GM South Queensland.
  • Jon White will manage the South East Region, encompassing Southern NSW, Victoria, Tasmania and South Australia. Mr White was previously south East region for Landmark. With each region divided into divisions, the South East Region will encompass Tasmania, with John Tuskin continuing to manage the Tasmanian based operations, reporting directly to Jon White.
  • Andrew Duperouzel will manage Nutrien’s Western Region, encompassing Western Australia and the Northern Territory. In 2011 Mr Duperouzel was appointed National Procurement Director for Landmark in Melbourne, a position he held until 2018, when he became the GM of the Victorian Division of Landmark operations. As with all the Regions, the Joint Ventures in the West will report to him.

In other senior Nutrien roles, Greg O’Neil will continue to look after CRT member businesses nationally. He has been with Ruralco for more than 35 years and will maintain oversight of the CRT network. Mark Trewin, previously Landmark’s Regional Director for Western Australia is now General Manager for Landmark Affiliates and Supply Chain. This newly created role is specifically designed to support this vital area of the business.

Andy Ingle will maintain responsibility for the Landmark International live export business and Will McEwin will continue to lead the Frontier International business.

New chairman, board members for Wagyu Association

The Australian Wagyu Association has a new chairman and several new directors following elections held as part of the body’s annual general meeting in late November.

Elected as the organisation’s 13th president was Mike Buchanan, who with his wife Maggie owns and operates Ginjo Wagyu, a fullblood seedstock and feeder operation which commenced in 1998, on properties in the Tea Gardens and Gloucester areas of the NSW Mid North Coast. He has been on the AWA Board since 2014, and replaces outgoing president Chantal Winter, who remains on the board.

Newly appointed directors are Dean Pollard and Gina Lincoln. Ms Lincoln is a well-respected consultant to the beef industry, with extensive experience in feedlot management and Fullblood herds, having spent 12 years as general manager of Peechelba Beef Feedlot and seven years with Blackmore Wagyu overseeing the breeding, feeding and operations of the company.

Dean Pollard, based in central Queensland as a mining and agricultural company director, is synonymous with Sahara Park Wagyu, breeding Fullblood genetics for the past five years and a member of the AWA since 2012.

Returning as board directors next year are John Spreadborough, Peter Cabassi, Sharon Oates and Lorna Tomkinson.

Chairman Mike Buchanan and the incoming AWA board pictured after the association’s recent AGM (chief executive Matt McDonagh pictured left)

Leaving the board this year after long contributions are Peter Krause and Peter Gilmour. Queensland breeder Peter Krause joined the board in 2014 and chaired the Genetic Improvement Committee overseeing the implementation of Single-Step Wagyu BreedPlan and BreedObject $Indexes. These two initiatives have resulted in 60,000 animals now being genotyped with 50K genomics and delivered improvements in EBV accuracy and genetic gain for members.

WA breeder Peter Gilmour, of Irongate Wagyu, served as AWA president between 2015-2018 and was elected to the board in 2005. He drove implementation of corporate governance standards and process improvements as the company grew significantly during that period. Peter provided a high level of commercial diplomacy and professional leadership.

Metcalfe to head ‘mega’ ag department

AUSTRALIA’S new ‘mega’ Agriculture, Water and Environment Department will be led by Andrew Metcalfe AO  – the man who in 2017 led Ernst & Young’s independent review for the Australian Meat Processor Corporation of MLA’s controversial proposed DEXA roll-out. He also led an EY review last year into Australian Wool Innovation’s performance and governance which made a raft of recommendations for change.

Andrew Metcalfe

Mr Metcalfe’s appointment to replace outgoing agriculture department secretary Daryl Quinlivan was flagged in a reshuffle announced yesterday by Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Mr Metcalfe was secretary of the Department of Immigration and Citizenship from 2005 to 2012 and secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry in 2013. Since then he has worked in the private sector, becoming a partner at EY, during which time he engaged with industry reviews, including those mentioned above.

“Mr Metcalfe will bring considerable public policy leadership experience to the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment and to the Secretaries Board,” the Prime Minister said yesterday.

No ministerial changes are expected with the changes, which will reduce the number of federal department from 18 to 14, including consolidating the environment functions of the current Department of the Environment and Energy with agriculture in the new Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment. Current ministers David Littleproud (Water Resources), Bridget McKenzie (Agriculture) and Sussan Ley (Environment) will remain.

Mr Morrison also announced yesterday that the remit of the North Queensland Livestock Industry Recovery Agency will be expanded to include drought.

Former NT chief minister Shane Stone will lead the new National Drought and North Queensland Flood Response and Recovery Agency, providing national leadership and a whole-of-government response to support farmers and regional communities as they respond to, and recover from, the drought and the north Queensland flood from earlier this year.

The agency will sit within the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and report to the Minister for Water Resources, Drought, Rural Finance, Natural Disaster and Emergency Management, David Littleproud.

Milne bids farewell after eight years as AHA chair

It was the end of an era at Animal Health Australia’s annual general meeting recently, as the national biosecurity protection company said farewell to chairman Peter Milne.

A former Cattle Council of Australia president, Mr Milne is AHA’s longest serving board member, having been appointed a director in 2002 and becoming chairman in 2011. During his tenure, he had a profound impact on AHA and the broader agricultural community.

“I’ve thoroughly enjoyed serving AHA over the past 17 years and greatly appreciate the support I’ve received, as well as the friendships I’ve made along the way,” Mr Milne said. “During my time on the board, I’ve witnessed a lot of things change, but one thing that’s remained consistent is the dedication and passion of AHA’s directors and staff to deliver the best possible outcomes for Australian livestock industries,” he said.

Mr Milne is being followed as AHA chair by South Australian pork and grain producer Sharon Starick, who has sat on the board since 2010.

Mrs Starick sits on a range of agricultural and rural organisations, and when combined with her experience as a pork and grains producer, has a comprehensive understanding of the challenges that will impact Australia’s livestock sector now and into the future.

“As a producer myself, I’m aware of the various challenges facing Australian livestock industries, such as increasing pressure on our biosecurity system, exotic diseases on our doorstep as well as drought and floods. With AHA now developing its next Strategic Plan, a key priority for me is seeing how AHA can continue to work collaboratively with our members and stakeholders to ensure the resilience and sustainability of the livestock sector,” she said.

AHA CEO, Kathleen Plowman noted Mr Milne’s enormous contribution to the company and the livestock sector.

“Peter is a leader who has been quietly bold and ready to embrace new ideas. His spirit, drive and determination has positioned AHA as a resilient, agile and effective organisation and secured its role as a leader and influencer in the animal health sector,” she said.

The changes to the Board were endorsed by AHA’s members – consisting of the Australian Government, state and territory governments, national livestock industries and CSIRO’s Australian Animal Health Laboratory – at the AGM, following recommendations made by an independent selection committee.

Incoming AHA chair, Sharon Starick with outgoing chair Peter Milne and AHA CEO Kathleen Plowman

Life membership for NSW cattle breeder

Also during the Australian Wagyu Association’s recent annual general meeting, the board bestowed life membership on one of its long-standing members, Arthur Dew, from Longford Station in NSW.

“Quiet, fair and honourable, is how many in the industry would describe this early pioneer of the Australian Wagyu industry – a man who is interested not only in improving his own business, but also the overall genetic merits and beef quality of the Australian Wagyu herd,” his citation said.

Originally an Angus breeder in the early 1980s, Mr Dew, who spent much of his career as a barrister based in Hong Kong, focused on live export steers to Japan through Elders International and feeder steers to Rangers Valley. He became aware of Wagyu when Peter Winkler imported Australia’s first live Wagyu heifer, that became the start of the Australian Wagyu industry.

Mr Dew’s initial focus was to develop the genetics, and an understanding of how to extrapolate the Japanese data to give preferred carcase weight and marbling. From those early beginnings, he has built a highly-regarded Wagyu herd at Longford Station. Longford currently produces more than 2000 calves each year across Fullblood, infused and purebred programs.

Mr Dew joined the AWA in 1996 and has contributed to the industry by making the Longford genetics available to other Wagyu breeders. To date, Longford have registered more than 12,000 cattle with 4342 registered as Fullblood and undertaken 1828 50K tests through the Association. The breeding program has given 183 Fullblood bulls with near 10,000 progeny – a quarter of which are in other herds other than Longford.

In more recent years, Longford bulls have featured well in Elite Wagyu Sales, and are participants in the Sire Progeny Net Feed Intake program at Kerwee Feedlot providing valuable information on feed conversion. Live exports of fullblood steers to Japan continues to be a major component of the Longford business and a testament to the respect Arthur has earned with his Japanese business counterparts for his business acumen and quality Wagyu genetics.

Former President of the Association, Keith Hammond, from Robbins Island Wagyu in Tasmania said everything Mr Dew had achieved had been based on a lot of research and hard work to build the Longford genetics, and that he has always had full knowledge of cattle performance.

“Arthur is a first-class operator, and has been nothing but positive for the industry,” Mr Hammond said. “He has always been open to sharing information and knowledge and it is clear that it has been of benefit to the Australian Wagyu industry.”

Another early industry pioneer, David Blackmore, worked with Mr Dew in the early days of the Australian Wagyu industry, and has had regular dealings and conversations with him ever since.

“Arthur has a deep knowledge of pedigree and bloodlines and is able to see the possibilities with his progeny,” Mr Blackmore said.

“Combined with an astute business sense, and a straightforward no-nonsense approach, he is one of the quiet achievers in the Wagyu industry establishing a successful business relationship with live export to Japan and well-regarded genetics. I have the deepest respect for his knowledge and approach to the industry.”

Sarah Hulme accepts the Honorary Life Membership for her father, Arthur Dew of Longford Station, from AWA president Chantal Winter.



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  1. John Reid, 28/06/2020

    Since you produced this article Nutrien have made a huge raft of redundancies. Including Ian Perry and Peter Weaver who were part of the key appointments.

    In the new financial year expect to see an amalgamation of stores. Where there are both a ruralco and nutrien store in the same town – expect one to close.

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