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Appointments to the Horticultural R&D Corporation.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Primary Industries and Energy, Senator David Brownhill, today announced the appointment of six members to the Board of the Horticultural Research and Development Corporation (HRDC).

The new Board members are: Mr James Croll, Dr Ann Hamblin, Mr Dennis Richards, Mr Peter Walker and Mr Paul Ziebarth.

Mr Croll is a Company Director and former Managing Director of Ruralco Limited; Dr Hamblin is Director of the Cooperative Research Centre for Soil and Land Management; Mr Richards is Director of the Victorian Institute for Horticultural Development and President of the Australian Society of Horticultural Science; Mr Walker is a citrus grower and Board Member of the Citrus Board of South Australia; and Mr Ziebarth is a vegetable grower and Deputy Chairman of Queensland Fruit and Vegetable Growers.

Senator Brownhill said he was pleased to maintain continuity on the HRDC Board by re- appointing one of the current members, Mr Tony Biggs. Mr Biggs is the Director of Cardinal Horticultural Services and Editor of Good Fruit and Vegetables. He is also the current Deputy Chairman of the HRDC.

Senator Brownhill said he announced on 30 May that Mr James McGeoch, Managing Director of McGeoch's Birkdale Nursery Pty Ltd and also a current member, had been appointed Chairman of the HRDC for the three years from 16 August 1997.

"The six Board members have been appointed for the same period, commencing 16 August 1997 and ending 15 August 2000," he said.

"The Board of the HRDC also comprises the Executive Director, Ms Lindy Hyam and a government member, Mr Andrew Combe."

Senator Brownhill said the HRDC commenced operations in 1988 to assist research and development (RD) in Australian horticulture.

"The HRDC's primary objective is, through RD, to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of Australian horticultural industries," he said.

"The Commonwealth matches, dollar for dollar, funds raised by industry for RD through the HRDC, up to a threshold of 0.5 per cent of the annual gross value of production of the participating industries.

"The RD budget of the Corporation has increased from $185,000 in 1988-89 to an estimated $30 million in 1997-98.

"The thirteen statutory levy paying industries currently participating in the Corporation are apple and pear, citrus, nursery, nashi, avocado, potato, macadamia, chestnut, cherry, custard apples, stone fruit, vegetables and strawberries.

"Many other industries make voluntary contributions to the HRDC."

Senator Brownhill said he was confident the new Board would continue to build on the success of its predecessors by attracting new statutory levy paying industries and by continuing the rapid growth of Australia's RD effort in horticulture.

"I see RD as vital to the process of adding value to Australia's horticultural products and the Corporation's endeavours will help Australian horticulture to be a sustainable, innovative and internationally competitive industry into the next century," he said.

Senator Brownhill also paid tribute to the four retiring members of the HRDC: Dr Rip van Velsen, Mr Michael Keenan, Mr Malcolm Kentish and Dr Donald Plowman.

Further inquiries:

Senator Brownhill's office, Murray Hansen 06 277 3705

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HORTICULTURAL RD CORPORATION BOARD (FROM 16 AUGUST 1997)

CHAIRMAN

Mr James McGeoch

Managing Director, McGeoch's Birkdale Nursery Pty Ltd

Brisbane, QLD.

Tel: 07 3207 2533

NOMINATED MEMBERS

Mr Anthony Biggs

Director, Cardinal Horticultural Services and Editor of Good Fruit and Vegetables

North Richmond, NSW

Tel: 045 71 1321

Mr James Croll

Company Director and former Managing Director of Ruralco Limited

KILLARA NSW 2071

Tel: 02 9498 1740

Dr Ann Hamblin

Director of the Cooperative Research Centre for Soil and Land Management STONYFELL SA 5066

Tel: 08 8303 8670

Mr Dennis Richards

Director, Victorian Institute for Horticultural Development and President, Australian Society of Horticultural Science

COCKATOO VIC 3781

Tel: 03 9210 9205

Mr Peter A Walker

Citrus grower and Board Member of the Citrus Board of South Australia RAMCO SA 5322

Tel: 08 8541 9050

Mr Paul D J Ziebarth

Vegetable grower and Deputy Chairman of Queensland Fruit and Vegetable Growers

LAIDLEY QLD 4341

Tel: 07 5465 1021

GOVERNMENT MEMBER

Mr Andrew Combe

Director, Horticultural Policy Section, Department of Primary Industries and Energy

Crops Division

CANBERRA ACT 2601

Tel: 02 6272 5493

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

Ms Lindy Hyam

Executive Director Horticultural Research and Development Corporation GORDON NSW 2072

Tel: 02 9418 2200

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