Government of Western Australia Official Site


State Government supports the WA grain industry


The WA State Government has backed the future of the State’s $5 billion grains industry by increasing its shareholding in the Western Australian-based plant breeding company InterGrain. Agriculture and Food Minister Dean Nalder said the State Government and InterGrain partner the Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) had decided to absorb the minority shareholding of partner Monsanto.

“Monsanto has elected to divest its minority shareholding in InterGrain, following a strategic global review of its business,” Mr Nalder said. “InterGrain has a key role to play in the development of new wheat and barley varieties that can increase industry profitability, so the Government and GRDC have taken on Monsanto’s 26 per cent equity stake in the company.”

InterGrain is a grains plant breeding company, established in 2007, with successful wheat and barley breeding programs that target the major cereal growing areas of Australia. It manages 29 commercial wheat varieties and 11 barley varieties. The process is now underway to increase the State-owned Western Australian Agriculture Authority’s share of InterGrain to 61.7 per cent, while the GRDC will increase its share to 38.3 per cent.

The Minister said the Government remained committed to supporting the growth of the State’s valuable grains industry to capture a greater share of rising global demand for food. “With Australia’s relatively high cost of production, genetic improvement in grain varieties is vital to maintain and increase the industry’s international competitiveness,” he said.

“Investment in science and innovation is critical for the grains industry to achieve its potential and increase its already sizable contribution to the Western Australian economy.” On average, WA’s grain production equates to more than one-third of Australia’s wheat and barley crop.