Sugar Research Australia (SRA) has appointed Dr Jason Eglinton to lead the Australian sugarcane breeding program in the role of Key Focus Area Leader for Optimally Adapted Varieties, Plant Breeding, and Release.
Dr Eglinton joined SRA earlier this year and has extensive experience in modern plant breeding technology and innovation including genetic tools such as genome sequencing, molecular markers, and high-throughput phenotyping.
He was formerly Professor of Plant Breeding at the University of Adelaide, where he led the development and commercialisation of new feed and malting barley varieties.
SRA CEO Mr Neil Fisher said that Dr Eglinton would continue to deliver on SRA investors’ requests for SRA to innovate within the Australian sugarcane breeding program.
“He will work with SRA’s existing plant breeders and all our research scientists, as well as external researchers, to bring innovation to the breeding program and deliver positive outcomes for Australian sugarcane growers and millers,” Mr Fisher said.
“The breeding program continues to be the single biggest investment area for SRA on behalf of our investors, delivering new and improved varieties with optimum traits and that suit the local conditions.”
Dr Eglinton’s appointment follows the resignation of Dr Bert Collard. Mr Fisher thanked Dr Collard for his contribution at SRA and the work he had undertaken to integrate introgression and molecular markers into the breeding program.
“Dr Eglinton will continue this work to accelerate genetic gain and deliver improvements to the Australian sugarcane industry through new varieties.”