A century of rice production celebrated at the RGA Annual Conference

13 Aug 2014 3:15 PM -
(L-R) Mr Hiroyuki Yamaguchi, Embassy of Japan; RGA President, Les Gordon; Jo Takasuka’s grandchildren, Henry Watters, Murray Watters and Nona Ratcliffe; and Bill Maher, Chair of the Nyah District Action Group.

The Ricegrowers’ Association of Australia Inc. (RGA) has enjoyed another very successful Annual Conference this year, celebrating 100 years since the first commercial rice crop was planted just outside Swan Hill, Victoria.

Over 180 growers, government officials and industry experts attended the conference which was held over two days last week at the Swan Hill Town Hall.

RGA President, Les Gordon, said the event was a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the success of the rice industry over the last hundred years and is excited about the future.

"Our two day Conference commenced with the unveiling of a new monument at the site where Jo Takasuka planted the first rice crops at Vinifera, around 20 kilometres north of Swan Hill. The local Nyah District Action Group approached Swan Hill Council to have the road where the rice monument stands renamed Takasuka Road, and this new sign was also presented to three of Jo Takasuka’s grandchildren in recognition of their family’s contribution to the rice industry and the area."

"Following this event, it was fitting our first speaker at the Town Hall was Dr Gary Lewis, author and historian, who presented a captivating account of the struggles of Jo Takasuka and his family in those early years, and the sheer perseverance that was needed to eventually achieve a successful rice crop," Mr Gordon said.

Other guest speakers were dairy farmer and Dairy Australia Chairman, Geoff Akers, and Senator Simon Birmingham, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment.

Read the full media release here.

Platinum Sponsor

BR&C Agents

The RGA is proud to have BR&C agents as our official conference partner in 2014.

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Visit BR&C's website for more information about their other products and services

Corporate Sponsors

SunRice is a $1 billion global food business and one of Australia’s leading branded food exporters. With sales, marketing and operations spanning the globe, we supply domestic markets and more than 60 countries with diverse and nutritious food products, from table rice, flour and snacks, to rice meals and companion animal and livestock products.

Our proud history dates back to the establishment of a single rice mill in the Riverina region of New South Wales in 1950. Today, SunRice is a vertically integrated business, operating across the entire value chain, including state-of-the-art processing, packing and value adding food plants, as well as an animal feeds division, a dedicated rice research company and a sophisticated local grain storage network.

For more information visit www.sunrice.com.au

Rabobank Australia is a part of the international Rabobank Group, the world’s leading specialist in food and agribusiness banking. Rabobank has more than 110 years’ experience providing customised banking and finance solutions to businesses involved in all aspects of food and agribusiness. Rabobank is structured as a cooperative and operates in 42 countries, servicing the needs of approximately 10 million clients worldwide through a network of close to 1600 offices and branches. Rabobank Australia is one of the country's leading rural lenders and a significant provider of business and corporate banking and financial services to the Australian food and agribusiness sector. The bank has 61 branches throughout Australia.

Visit www.rabobank.com.au for more information

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Silver Sponsors and Supporters

Coleambally Irrigation

Crop Care Australasia

Deniliquin Freighters

Grizzly Engineering

Murray Irrigation

NSW Department of Primary Industries

Waterfind

Local Land Services Murray