Chief Executive Officer’s reportSIMON MOLTONI CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, POTATO GROWERS ASSOCIATIONFor this, and many more tasty potato recipes go to with: white varietiesLayered potatoes with vegan white sauce and mushroomsIt has been a hectic period here at Horticulture House. As mentioned in the last issue, we are undergoing renovations and therefore have had to pack the contents of the PGA into storage.During this process we discovered many fascinating pieces from our history. Some of the most interesting date back to the war years and speak of a very different time. Under a thick layer of dust, at the back of a storage cabinet, I discovered our “minute books” including the very first meeting of the PGA. Some of the items that best reflect our history will be on permanent display once the renovations are complete.At our recent APC Potato committee meeting we were able to assess the previous season and consider the project proposals for the coming year. The production in WA last season was affected by the severe storms and did lead to imports in order to fill the production shortfall.It was pleasing to receive many, significant proposals. These ranged from existing projects like the administration of the Certified Seed Scheme, through to new projects ranging from biosecurity and R and D, to potential database and digital solutions to improve accuracy and efficiency in the Seed Scheme. We will advise growers of the successful proposals once the approval process is complete.Early season rainfall has seen a very promising start to the Autumn/Winter supply period. So far, we have had a warm, mild autumn that has crops looking very good. Unfortunately, these same rainfall events have caused some significant losses in seed crops in the Albany region.Individual growers have been affected to varying degrees, so growers need to confirm their orders and make any necessary adjustments. This loss is a significant setback to seed growers who are still recovering from the TPP incursion that devastated interstate sales.Earlier this year, AUSVEG CEO James Whiteside announced he would be moving on at the end of June. James has had a successful term as CEO despite the challenges in recent times due to COVID-19. One of the major disruptions from this has been the cancellation of Hort Connections last year. This event provides significant income for AUSVEG and James has had to oversee the maintenance of the delivery of services on a greatly reduced budget. James, the board, and staff are to be congratulated on managing this issue over the last year.I know James is determined that Hort Connections in Brisbane this May (7–9) will be a great success to improve the finances and continue to deliver services into the future. We wish James all the best in his future endeavours.Michael Coote has been appointed as the new Ausveg CEO starting from July 1. Michael has experience working at both HIA and Ausveg and has a deep understanding and significant network in the potato and vegetable industries. We wish Michael great success in his new role.I would like to thank Morena and Georgia for their continued efforts to support our members and also our Committee of Management, in particular our Chairman, Vaughan Carter.MORE INFORMATIONContact Simon Moltoni on 0447 141 752 or email