Brad­ford: Fu­ture in grow­ers’ hands

Southern Riverina news - - News -

DE­NILIQUIN farmer John Brad­ford be­lieves the fu­ture of SunRice should be in the hands of its grow­ers.

A pas­sion for rice grow­ing and the com­pany which rice grow­ers own has led to his de­ci­sion to stand for the SunRice Board of Direc­tors.

Mr Brad­ford makes no apolo­gies for his strong stance against the failed re­cent Ebro sale, but firmly be­lieves it is now time for ev­ery­one to move on and con­cen­trate on mak­ing SunRice a more dy­namic and pros­per­ous com­pany.

‘‘I be­lieve SunRice should be kept in ma­jor­ity grower con­trol with a long term plan that pro­tects grow­ers.

‘‘We need a sus­tain­able and trans­par­ent com­pany that de­ter­mines its own fu­ture, and at the same time re­turns a good paddy price along with a strong div­i­dend to its share­hold­ers,’’ Mr Brad­ford said.

He also be­lieves his age would help him add a pos­i­tive di­men­sion to the SunRice board.

‘‘I’m 42 years old and I know that younger peo­ple have a life­style to which com­pa­nies like SunRice must re­main in touch with.

‘‘I be­lieve that there is al­ways scope for fur­ther prod­uct de­vel­op­ment and place­ment.’’

Mr Brad­ford said the first pri­or­ity must be over­com­ing the com­pany’s debt is­sues.

‘‘While the debt is op­er­at­ing higher than de­sired, a con­sol­i­da­tion ap­proach needs to be taken.

‘‘All av­enues to re­duc­ing the debt must be in­ves­ti­gated, and rein­vest­ment must be ap­peal­ing and priced ac­cord­ingly,’’ he said.

Mr Brad­ford is the fifth gen­er­a­tion of his fam­ily to farm in the De­niliquin district, and they have been rice grow­ers since 1969.

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