190707 Waite Jenny Davidson

Accomplished agricultural researcher Dr Jenny Davidson has been appointed as the new South Australian Grain Industry Trust (SAGIT) scientific officer, taking over from a retiring Dr Allan Mayfield.

Jenny, who has worked within the South Australian Government agricultural research sector for her almost 40-year career, said she was excited to help drive local research with an organisation that has a track record of improving outcomes for grain growers.

“SAGIT does some absolutely wonderful work linking industry and researchers with funding and I’m proud to become a part of that,” she said.

“Responding to local issues and testing for solutions by making funding available for large and small projects has proven to be crucial in addressing and solving problems that are very important to growers.”

Agriculture has always been a part of Jenny’s life. She grew up on the family farm near Strathalbyn and her husband runs an irrigated operation near Langhorne Creek. Her two brothers continue to run the family farm and her cousins are growers on the Yorke Peninsula.

She began working for the Department of Agriculture after graduating university in the 1980s. Following a small break to start a family, she returned to the then newly formed South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) in 1995 and has worked on a number of research projects for the Department of Primary Industries and Regions’ research arm since then.

Jenny said one of her goals as the new scientific officer was to build on SAGIT’s extensive catalogue of research outcomes.

“SAGIT has a rich history of quality research and I am keen to continue building on this to make sure growers continue to have access to the latest developments,” she said.

SAGIT chair Max Young said Jenny’s expertise would be invaluable to SAGIT and the wider SA grain industry as the trust works to fund key research and development opportunities.

“Jenny is a passionate researcher and will provide a useful perspective to the trust as someone who has spent many years working to drive a sustainable and strong industry into the future,” he said.

Max said the trust was grateful for Allan’s hard work throughout his eight years in the scientific officer role.

“Allan’s contribution to the trust, and the industry as a whole, has been substantial and we wish him well in his retirement,” he said.

“He has used his many years of experience in agronomy and farming to build strong relationships for the trust and guide quality research outcomes for the good of the industry.

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