Single desk for rice 'validated'

THE SINGLE desk rice marketing arrangements returned $80 million to growers during the 2012-2013 crop year.

The return validates the operating method, according to the Ricegrowers' Association of Australia (RGA) president Les Gordon.

Mr Gordon said the latest report from the NSW Rice Marketing Board (RMB) showed the single desk was responsible for a $65.9 million export price premium for the 2012-2013 crop year and growers saved $13.5 million in freight costs with the scale advantage.

"This means higher prices to growers than would be the case if the single desk for rice were dismantled," Mr Gordon said.

"It also means an additional $80 million stays within the rice growing communities.

"At the time of the NSW Government's decision to continue vesting, I said it was a decision made in the best interests of growers and our communities."

The news comes on the back of new RMB board appointments announced by NSW primary industries minister Katrina Hodgkinson.

Robyn Clubb has been reappointed for a four year term and is joined by a new director, Victoria Taylor.

Mr Gordon said the appointments were good for the industry.

"Robyn and Victoria are sound choices and both will make a great contribution to the Rice Marketing Board," Mr Gordon said.

"Robyn has been a director of the RMB since 2004 and throughout her tenure, she has worked very hard for our industry and led the Board through the review of vesting in 2012.

"Victoria is well known to us, having previously been executive director of the RGA and we are confident she fully understands our industry and is well respected by rice growers in NSW."

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