Message from the CEO
At the commencement of my term as CEO, I shared my vision for Plant Health Australia (PHA) as being the repository of knowledge for everything plant health within Australia, with government, industry, peak bodies and growers working together to achieve an integrated national plant biosecurity system.
To support this, I committed to four focus areas pivotal to making PHA the centre of excellence for plant health information. These included developing an interconnected information system, facilitating the mapping of jurisdictional efforts to better align agricultural and food strategies, working collaboratively to reduce duplication and fragmentation across research and development programs, and highlighting the value of the national plant biosecurity system for market advantage.
On the one-year anniversary of my commencement with PHA, I’m pleased to say that our new five-year strategic plan is shaping up well to position and support PHA to deliver on these focus areas.
Shortly before the end of the financial year, we released the new streamlined Annual Operational Plan outlining our operational priorities, outcomes and actions for 2021–22. While innovation is high on our agenda, our work continues to focus on strengthening Australia’s biosecurity system.
Applications for Non-Executive Directors closed on Monday 28 June and applications are currently being assessed by Carnovale Recruitment for recommendations to the Board Selection Committee for interviewing.
In little over a month, the Rural Women’s Awards (RWA) are due to take place in Canberra with the national winner being announced on Wednesday 25 August. The RWA acknowledge the essential role women play in rural industries, business and communities and provides a platform to inspire and support Australian women. RWA tickets are available for purchase online.
Another key event is the annual Australian Biosecurity Awards. Once again through the Farm Biosecurity Program, PHA and Animal Health Australia have partnered with the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment to recognise primary producers who demonstrate outstanding, proactive on-farm biosecurity practices. The search for these biosecurity champions is on and I encourage anyone who knows a producer who practices outstanding biosecurity on their farm to nominate them before Friday 30 July.
The Australian Biosecurity Symposium has a new date and venue and will now be held 1–3 December at the RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast. The call for abstracts has also been extended until Friday 30 July.
As we continue to grapple with Covid-19 outbreaks and fluctuating restrictions across the country, we at PHA will continue to be flexible and adapt our approach in connecting with stakeholders.