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Steven CardenSteven Carden1 3

Talk Time: 9.00am, 13 December 2016

Topic: Future Farming: Challenges and Opportunities

Prior to becoming CEO of Landcorp in August 2013, Steven was General Manager of Australia’s largest pasture seed company, PGG Wrightson Seeds. Steven began at PGG Wrightson in 2008 as Group Manager of Business Development, serving also on the NZTE Beachheads Advisory Board. From 2003 to 2008, he worked at McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm, in New York and Auckland advising companies throughout North America, Europe and Australia.Prior to that he was General Manager of New Zealand’s first internet retailing company, FlyingPig. His proudest accomplishment is the founding of the First Foundation in 1998, a programme that helps talented but financially disadvantaged secondary school students successfully complete university through workplace scholarships. He is the author of “NZ Unleashed”, published by Random House in 2007. He holds an LLB and BA from Auckland University, and an MBA from Harvard Business School. 

Julian Cribb Julian Cribb 2014.5

Talk Time: 8.30am, 15 December 2016

Topic: The Age of Food

Dramatic evolution in the global diet, cuisine and consumer preferences will, over coming decades, change the foods we eat more profoundly than at any time in history.  Driven by emerging scarcities of soil, water, oil, nutrients, fish and extinction of the climate that gave rise to agriculture, our diet is poised to change profoundly to a sustainable, nutritious, healthy world diet – and many new opportunities in this, The Age of Food.

Julian Cribb is an Australian author and science communicator. He is principal of Julian Cribb & Associates who provide specialist consultancy in the communication of science, agriculture, food, mining, energy and the environment. He is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Technological Science and Engineering (ATSE) and a member of the ANU Emeritus Faculty.
His career includes appointments as newspaper editor, scientific editor for The Australian newspaper, director of national awareness for CSIRO, member of numerous scientific boards and advisory panels, and president of national professional bodies for agricultural journalism and science communication. His published work includes over 8000 articles, 3000 media releases and eight books. He has received 32 awards for journalism. His internationally-acclaimed book, The Coming Famine (2010) explored the question of how we can feed 10 billion humans this century. His book, Poisoned Planet (2014) looks at the contamination of the Earth system and all humanity by man-made chemicals and what we can do about it. His forthcoming book Surviving the 21st Century deals with the existential crisis facing humanity in our time - and what we can do about it.


Mike McLaughlinMikeMcLaughlin noname

Talk Time: 8.30am, 14 December 2016

Topic: Nutrient Management

Mike McLaughlin is a Professor and Director of the University of Adelaide Fertiliser Technology Research Centre at the Waite Institute. He is also a CSIRO Science Fellow in CSIRO Land and Water. Mike's research interests are in environmental chemistry, the behaviour of nutrients/contaminants in soils and the improvement of fertiliser efficiency.




Jeff Baldock Jeff Baldock

Talk Time: 9.15am, 14 December 2016

Topic: Minimising Greenhouse Gases

Jeff Baldock leads the Soil Carbon and Nutrient Cycling Group in CSIRO Agriculture and Food.  His research has examined soil organic matter chemistry, dynamics and contribution to soil productivity. Jeff has led projects quantifying the stocks and composition of soil organic carbon, improving Australia’s National Greenhouse Gas Inventory and developing methodologies for inclusion in Australia’s Emissions Reduction Fund.  Recently he has extended his research to Blue carbon environments (Mangrove, Salt Marsh and Seagrass environments).


Steve Wakelin 

wakelin med

Talk Time: 9.45am, 13 December 2016

Topic: Soil Biology

Dr Wakelin is a senior research scientist at AgResearch, Lincoln. His primary area of expertise is soil biology and function, with a focus on microbial ecology, biogeochemistry, plant disease suppression, and ecotoxicology. Dr Wakelin has a broad range of skills in molecular microbiology, with emphasis on methods to detect and measure ‘functional’ genes and taxa associated with key processes affecting nutrient cycling and ecosystem health. Prior to working at AgResearch, Dr Wakelin was a leader of the Molecular Microbiology team at CSIRO Land and Water, Adelaide. His team had broad research interests spanning the functional microbial ecology of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Research projects included acid sulphate soil biogeochemistry, groundwater denitrification, gold biogeochemistry, sub-surface regolith microbiology, and ecotoxicology of Cu and organic pollutants. During his post-doctoral fellowship work, Dr Wakelin isolated and identified strains of Penicillium fungi capable of mobilising phosphate from highly insoluble mineral (rock) sources. These microorganisms have been patented (WO/2010/037167) for commercial use as microbial products to increase P availability in agricultural soils.



Louis Schipper 

Louis Schipper

Talk Time: Friday 16 December, The Norman Taylor Memorial Lecture 

Topic: Carbon, nitrogen, energy storage in organic matter of pasture soils - and cake

Soil organic matter is a globally important store of carbon and nitrogen containing a vast amount of energy. I will focus on the surprisingly large changes in soil carbon and nitrogen stocks in New Zealand pasture systems associated with different management practices and soil orders. The energy held in organic matter also regulates the return of nitrogen to the atmosphere via denitrification and I will consider approaches to manipulate this microbial process in the landscape. There remain many unanswered questions about the landscape cycling of soil organic matter.





Date: 15 December 2016

Time: 3:30pm - 5:00pm

The panelists will address future challenges and pressures placed on our soils by competing production, social, political and environmental demands.

Facilitated by: Kim Hill, Radio New Zealand  full kim hill 13







Bob Gilkes

Bob Gilkes 4

Bob is a world-renown researcher in soil-mineralogy, fertiliser chemistry, mine site rehabilitation and management of soil, water and other resources. A fomer Winthrop Professor of Soil Science, Bob is a Senior Honorary Research Fellow at the University of WA, a recipient of the Prescott Medal for outstanding contribution to soil science and a Crawford Medal recipient for his lifetime contribution to research supervision, mentoring overseas students and contribution to building capacity in developing countries for food security. Bob is highly regarded by former students and the WA farming community.





Susie McKeague 

029 Susie Cropped

Susie McKeague completed a Bachelor of Agricultural Science at Queensland University in the late 80’s. She is currently a farm environmental consultant and director of McKeague Consultancy, based in Dunedin, Otago, where she provides a consultancy service to farmers and farmer owned irrigation companies in the Otago and Canterbury regions. Much of her work relates to providing advice on water quality and quantity issues.

Susie was previously employed for 12 years by the Otago Regional Council as Manager of the Land Resource Unit, where she maintained a valuable role liaising between farmer groups and the Regional Council.
Before moving to NZ Susie worked in the Western Australian wheatbelt in a variety of roles including research into soil water movement, Landcare officer and project management. The challenge of designing and applying environmental regulation in an effective and practical way keep her motivated and passionate about her work with the rural sector.


Andy MacFarlane 

Andrew Macfarlane is the Founding Director of Macfarlane Rural Business Ltd and has been a practicing farm management consultant since 1981. He is chairman of Deer Industry NZ and Past President of the NZ Institute of Primary Industry Management. He has a keen interest in building businesses and investment portfolios. He is a director of ANZCO Foods Ltd, AgResearch, and Ngai Tahu Farming, and a Councillor of Lincoln University and Chairman of Deer Industry NZ.

Andrew has been a past winner of the Ballance Farm Environment Awards Canterbury (2003) and runner up of the Lincoln University Foundation South Island Farmer of the Year (2007). He has a Bachelor of Agricultural Science and is a Member of the Institute of Directors. Andrew has a particular interest in building depth in both the numbers and quality of young professionals entering the rural sector and expertise in developing environmentally sound farm management systems, particularly in relation to irrigation schemes and on-farm land use options. 


Dr Jacqueline Rowarth, CNZM, CRSNZ, FNZIAHS 

Jacqueline holds the new position of Chief Scientist for the Environmental Protection Authority. Until the end of October she held the Foundation Chair in Agribusiness at the University of Waikato, a position she held from 2012, having spent the previous five years in the role of Director of Massey Agriculture and Foundation Chair of Pastoral Agriculture, at Massey University. She has also taught at University of Melbourne and Lincoln University, plus worked for DSIR Grasslands/Agresearch from 1988 to 1994. 

Jacqueline obtained a PhD in soil science from Massey University, having completed a B.Ag.Sci with honours in Environmental Agriculture. She was made Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to agricultural science in 2008. She is a Past President of the New Zealand Grassland Association and the New Zealand Institute of Agricultural and Horticultural Science, a past trustee of AGMARDT, and a past Director of Crop and Food Research. 




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