Meet your panel

Chris Joseph David Shannon Darrel Dent

Northern Panel member Chris Joseph is managing director of a family farming operation at Dalby, on Queensland's Darling Downs, which grows a wide range of crops in an intensive, irrigated and dry land, broadacre rotation.

The family uses forward contracts and futures, as well as direct-to-user selling, in its crop marketing strategy. It is committed to industry developments through collaboration with Queensland Department of Primary Industries and seed companies in trials of new varieties and crops.

Mr Joseph holds an Associate Diploma in Farm Management from the former Queensland Agricultural College at Gatton (now the niversity of Queensland Gatton Campus).

He has been a member of the committee of the Gowrie-Oakey' Creek Water Advisory Board since 1978 - and deputy chairman since 1990 - and is secretary of the Gowrie- Oakey Creek Irrigators Association, and a member of the Darling Downs Regional Advisory Committee (since 1996).

After an absence of six years, SA graingrower David Shannon was re-appointed to the Southern Region Panel last year. He owns and manages a 2,450 ha mixed farming property at Kapunda in the State's Lower North which combines cereal, oilseed and pulse production with a sheep enterprise centred on wool and prime lamb production.

Mr Shannon is an Australian Nuffield Farming Scholar who has studied in Australia and the UK. He has had a longstanding association with research many trials having been conducted on the Kapunda property.

Apart from his GRDC responsibilities, he is also a committee member of the SA Durum Growers' Association and a member of the SA Crop Science Society and Kondinin Group. He has an active interest in conservation farming both at the research level and also on his own property where the farming system is based on zero till.

For the southern panel, Mr Shannon chairs the wide-ranging winter cereals program which, apart from providing support for existing projects, includes the implementation of a number of strategic initiatives. These are designed to stimulate barley variety improvement and barley industry development; accelerate the development of the durum industry in Australia; produce a nationally coordinated molecular marker program for winter cereals; and eliminate grain defects including pre-harvest sprouting and black point within 10 years.

Mr Shannon also chairs a committee concerned with GRDC education and training initiatives such as support for students, researchers, farmers and farmer groups to further their studies and training.

After more than 40 years working as a farmer and with extensive experience with the Grain Pool of WA (GPWA), Darrel Dent has valuable knowledge of the Australian grains industry which he brings to the GRDC's Western Regional Panel on the crop improvement program, which primarily covers pulses and oilseeds.

Mr Dent's eight-year association with the Grain Pool of WA (GPWA) was as Director, Deputy Chairman and inaugural Agracorp Director, a GPWA subsidiary.

"WA is very competitive in the national and international grain markets, but we can always strive for improvement," he said.

As a primary producer, Mr Dent is a member of a family partnership at 'Bimbadeen Farm', Cuballing, which crops 1,150 ha of lupins, oats, barley, wheat and canola.

Maintaining a healthy balance between sustainable agriculture and natural resource management has been an integral part of Mr Dent's farming practices.

As a founding member of the East Yornanning Land Conservation District Committee, he has adopted conservation techniques such as retaining remnant vegetation, ensuring adequate drainage and utilising minimum-tillage cropping and stubble retention practices.

Mr Dent's passion for advancing the Australian grains and farming industry means he is keenly aware of the role science and technology play in delivering faster, better and more practical outcomes for the GRDC's identified research priorities.

Region North, South, West