New MLA directors bring fresh expertise

28 Nov, 2009 01:00 AM

ONE of two additions to the Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) board is a globetrotter whose passport would have more stamps than the average country post office.

Iain Mars, of Swift Australia, who comes to the board via stints in Europe, Asia and Africa, says he has a passion for the red meat industry and wants to give something back.

His successful election last week, along with that of Greg Harper, CSIRO Livestock Industries, and the re-election of Narrogin producer Peter Trefort, continues the traditional balance of experience on the MLA board.

Mr Mars' 28-year career, however, has been anything but traditional.

He started in the meat industry in London, working for the Vesty Group in its finance department, from where after a strong performance, he was promoted to a position in central Africa.

Posts followed in Australia, New Zealand, Brazil and Taiwan.

"I always wanted to work in the Far East and during my time in Taiwan I worked on developing new products to be sold into that market," Mr Mars said.

From Taiwan, he moved to Japan during its time of liberalisation before briefly returning to the UK.

A stint in Korea and, later, another posting in Brazil followed, before his current move to Australia for the second time.

"I wanted to come back to Australia and when I was asked if I wanted the job it only took me a few seconds to make up my mind," he said.

The other addition to the director ranks, Greg Harper, carries on the tradition of having solid research and scientific knowledge on the board.


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