AgForce has strengthened its commitment to Queensland cane farmers by announcing the appointment of Panikos Romanos Spyrou to the new role of AgForce Cane Services manager.
Hailing from the cane-producing Burdekin community, Mr Spyrou has previously held senior roles advocating for cane farmers as inaugural chair of directors of Burdekin District Cane Growers and as manager and director of the Kalamia Cane Growers Organisation.
AgForce CEO Michael Guerin said Mr Spyrou's appointment was significant for cane farmers, AgForce, and industry in providing a position dedicated to cane commodity-specific interests.
"Mr Spyrou's appointment couldn't come at a better time for cane farmers who need strong advocacy on important issues like the Great Barrier Reef," Mr Guerin said.
"As AgForce's Cane Services manager, Mr Spyrou will be working closely with cane stakeholders, and with mills along the north Queensland coast.
"Mr Spyrou himself has a strong connection to industry and his appointment is another critical step in AgForce gaining the sort of representation all cane farmers deserve."
Mr Spyrou said he "couldn't wait to play his part in helping bring greater recognition and support to Queensland's cane farmers."
"I've seen the cane industry from all angles. I've worked as a cane farmer, and as a grower representative and advocate - so I know about the issues facing cane farmers, as well as the fantastic benefits cane farming and the producers themselves bring to their local areas and to the wider Queensland public and the economy," Mr Spyrou said.
"AgForce does a terrific job for all producers, but I've been particularly impressed by what they've been able to achieve in such a short space of time - in the middle of a pandemic - for cane farmers since taking on the Invicta Combined Growers' Organisation in 2020.
"The cane industry and cane communities have definitely been given something of a shakeup - but the commitment AgForce has shown to going that extra mile is why I'm here now.
"It's my job to help re-double AgForce's efforts - bringing my own knowledge and expertise to the Cane Services Manager role so that not only do AgForce's current and future cane members benefit, but the industry as a whole."
AgForce memberships are now being offered to Wilmar mills, including Plane Creek and Proserpine, and from 2022 to every cane farmer in Queensland.
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