National Farmers' Federation CEO
Simon Talbot was appointed the chief executive officer of the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) in September 2014. Prior to joining the NFF, Simon was a director at Mondelēz International for seven years, heading the corporate affairs function for Australia and New Zealand and leading agricultural investment in the Asia-Pacific.
Simon is an extensive contributor to food manufacturing and Asian Century policy. He has led the development of an extensive and collaborative white paper addressing how Australian food processing and associated agricultural supply chain can substantially improve its innovation capacity and competitiveness as an industry.
Dr Siang Hee Tan
CropLife Asia executive director
Dr Siang Hee Tan is the executive director of CropLife Asia, the Asian operation of an international trade association with a presence in 91 countries. He is responsible for directing regulatory, crop protection, seeds, intellectual property, biotechnology as well as communications and outreach programs in 15 Asian countries.
His other professional experience includes establishing the University of Putra Malaysia’s (UPM) Genome Centre, and management of two startup ventures developing bioinformatics software and prenatal genetic testing. Additionally, at Sime Darby, he was responsible for: establishing the biotechnology section for the Sime Darby Technology Centre; project managing the Northern Corridor Economic Region Project (NCER) on large-scale farming, and developing an agri-entrepreneur program.
He was also the CEO of HLH-Agri International Pte Ltd, managing a large-scale corn plantation and agri-tainment park while also overseeing maize processing and commodity trading.
Agrária Brazil CEO
Jorge Karl has a major in Agronomical Sciences from the State University of Maringa (UEM) and postgraduated in Rural Administration from the State University of Londrina
(UEL). As well as being a farmer himself, he is the CEO of Cooperativa Agrária Agroindustrial, which in 2013 received the “The Decade Productivity” award from Agroconsult, one of the most reputable agribusiness consultants in Brazil.
Agrária was ranked the 10th company in the final ranking of Brazilian Agriculture, according to the newspaper Valor Econômico.
Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Rural Affairs
In his 18 years as the Member for Hunter Mr Fitzgibbon has held a number of shadow ministerial positions including Mining, Energy and Forestry, Defence, Assistant Treasurer, Banking and Financial Services, Small Business & Competition, and Tourism.
In government, Mr Fitzgibbon served as Minister for Defence and Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.
Along the way he also served as Chief Government Whip and chaired the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade.
Mr Fitzgibbon is now the Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Rural Affairs and also the founder of the Country Caucus, a group of federal Labor MPs and Senators dedicated to the promoting the interests of rural and regional Australia.
President and CEO of CWB
Ian White has been president and chief executive officer of CWB since April 2008, leading the company through deregulation, transformation and commercialisation.
He has extensive senior management, agribusiness and commodity marketing experience, being a previous managing director and CEO of Queensland Sugar Limited, CEO of Grainco Australia Limited, Defiance Mills Limited and Queensland Cotton’s US Operations.
Ian holds a Bachelor of Economics (Honours) degree from Sydney University, is a member of the Australian Society of CPAs, and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He has been a Director of a number of companies and organisations including The Queensland Competition Authority.
Managing director and CEO Interflour Holdings
Since 2005, Greg Harvey has been the managing director and CEO of Interflour Holdings, one of the world's largest grain processing companies. Interflour operates throughout South East Asia and Turkey with over 1500 employees from 17 different nationalities, with headquarters in Singapore.
From 22 years of hands on management experience in international agribusiness, Greg has a deep knowledge of the global strategies and trends determining the future of the food industry, and great enthusiasm for the potential for Australian agribusinesses in Asia as both suppliers and investors.
Outside the private sector, Greg is the chairperson of the Food Fortification Initiative, an alliance of private companies, international government and aid agencies based in Atlanta USA, that seeks to alleviate birth defects and child malnutrition through the fortification of wheat flour, maize flour and rice with minerals and vitamins.
A fourth-generation US wheat farmer from Northern Idaho, Emily French has long been active in agriculture.
After earning a degree in Agricultural Business from Washington State University, she began her trading career as a physical cash trader for Cargill, working for the firm’s Grain, Oilseed Processing and Wet Milling Divisions.
Following Cargill, Emily worked for the US Grains Council and World Perspectives in Washington DC for five years. She then moved to the investment banking and OTC derivatives markets with National Australia Bank in both New York and Sydney, Australia, before returning to the US to work as a senior vice president in Macquarie’s Treasury and Commodity Group.
In early 2009, Emily left Macquarie to form ConsiliAgra – an active advice and strategy group covering the world agricultural commodity markets, specialising in grain and oilseeds. Clients include hedge funds, speculative traders, agricultural resources, commercial commodity clients and investment banks.
Dr Andy Crane
CEO CBH Group
Dr Andrew (Andy) Crane joined grain marketer, Grain Pool Pty Ltd in 2001 and was appointed general manager of the Marketing and Trading business when it merged with CBH in 2003.
In 2008 he became the CBH Group's GM, Strategy and Business Development and was appointed chief executive officer in April 2009. Since joining the CBH Group, he has led the reorganisation of the business to ensure that grower members benefit from the dramatic deregulation of their industry.
Prior to joining the CBH Group, Andrew spent 12 years in the European malting industry.
Andrew is also a director of Interflour Holdings Ltd, chairman of the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals and has recently been appointed a member of the Curtin University Council.
ANZ deputy CEO
Graham Hodges has been deputy CEO of Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) Banking Group Limited since May 2009.
Prior to this role, Mr Hodges was CEO, New Zealand and a director of ANZ National Bank Limited responsible for the running of ANZ Group’s New Zealand business.
He has held the positions of group managing director, Corporate; managing director, Small to Medium Business and head of Corporate Banking for Australia and New Zealand.
Graham joined ANZ in 1991 and was appointed chief economist in 1992, a post he held for three years.
Prior to working with ANZ, he spent several years with the International Monetary Fund in Washington DC and nine years in Commonwealth Treasury in Canberra.
Senator Bridget McKenzie
Nationals Senator for Victoria
Proud and passionate about regional Australia, Bridget McKenzie grew up in Victoria with the traditional rural influences of small business, sport and agriculture.
Bridget is firm in her belief that strong regional economies and secure regional communities are critical to the future prosperity of our great nation.
Recognising small business is the backbone of many regional communities, Bridget wants to ensure they have every opportunity to prosper.