New fruit chief

By Country News

Fruit Growers Victoria has announced the election of Mitchell McNab as the organisation’s chairman.

Mr McNab is a fifth-generation orchardist and manages his family’s H.V. McNab and Sons orchard and cold storage complex.

He recently completed a Nuffield Scholarship investigating innovative robotics technology for the horticultural sector, especially for fruit growing and packing operations.

‘‘I’m very excited about the opportunities for Victorian fruit growers and the role FGVL can play in turning these opportunities into reality,’’ Mr McNab said.

‘‘We produce high-quality, safe and clean fruit that consumers in Australia and around the world want. We need to be innovative in the way we do business to make sure we can compete with producers elsewhere and meet this consumer demand profitably.

‘‘FGVL has an important role to play in helping businesses across the industry adopt these new technologies, and I’m looking forward to being part of that.

‘‘I’d also like to continue the excellent work of FGVL on key policy issues such as water, labour availability, co-ordinated pest management, and developing human capacity across the industry.’’

Mr McNab paid tribute to former chairman Gary Goodwill’s lengthy service to the industry.

‘‘Gary has been on the FGVL board for 10 years and has served as chairman for the past four. He has been a great leader for our industry, regularly providing a strong voice for fruit growers in the local and national media, and leading important policy debates,’’ Mr McNab said.

‘‘I’m pleased Gary will remain on the board to ensure we have a good mix of youth and experience leading the industry.’’

FGVL also announced the appointment of fruit grower Nathan Barolli to the board following the earlier resignation of Brent Reeve.