Everyday plant health heroes

Jeff Russell

Western Australian Grains Biosecurity Officer, Grains Farm Biosecurity Program

The future for grains in Australia looks very bright.

How did you choose your job? Or did it choose you?

The job chose me after a restructure of the Western Australian Agriculture Department in 2010 the position became available to me at the Northam Regional office. This allowed for a seamless transition from the previous Western Australian Grains Biosecurity Officer at the time.

How long have you worked in this industry?

I have over 31 years in the WA grains industry working in areas of crop and soil research, crop seasonal forecasting, general advisory and agronomy and extension to industry development.

What does plant health mean to you?

The maintenance of global food security and economic growth while ensuring biodiversity and ecological health.

What are your greatest achievements in this role?

Being able to document industry progress in having a heightened understanding and adoption of good farm practices that promote biosecurity.

What does a typical day look like for you?

There is a mix of activities with indoors in the office writing and compiling articles and planning extension materials and outdoors conducting surveillance or attending industry and grower events to promote grains biosecurity practices, so this helps keep the interest alive.

What advice would you give anybody wanting to get into the industry?

The future for grains in Australia looks very bright. Be adaptable with technology and people.

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