Well-known local face Rob McCarron is celebrating 35 years of service with Pacific Seeds, after starting work with the organisation in October 1982.
Rob, who now works as the Pacific Seeds Territory Manager for coastal NSW, Northern WA and the NT, started work as a depot supervisor in Dubbo where Pacific Seeds operated a processing plant in the early 1980s.
Shortly after, Rob moved to a role in Emerald in central Queensland, where agriculture was rapidly expanding.
“I was only in Emerald for 15 months or so but I loved it, it was some of my best time with the company. People in general were very hospitable and friendly,” Rob said.
“I was working in such big open spaces and calling on farmers was a big part of it. A lot of the farmers had moved up from NSW, Victoria and South Australia and were hungry for information and there wasn’t the access to it that there is today.”
Rob moved to Gunnedah shortly afterwards when a job opening became available.
“The General Manager at the time was reluctant to let me leave Emerald after just moving up there but I convinced him to let me move back to my home territory and promised I’d stay in Gunnedah for 10 years and not move again. That was more than 30 years ago.”
At the time, Rob’s sales territory reached from Sydney, to Forbes and up to Walgett and across to the coast including Coffs Harbour down to Taree.
“Our territories were bigger back then when we did not have the product range to sell compared to today – we’ve got a lot more territory managers on the road now,” he said.
“Back then, sunflowers and the Hysun range were the dominant products I sold, whereas today sunflowers are a minor crop and the canola dominates.”
“If my memory serves me well, I think I was the first territory in the company to sell $1million worth of product back in the late 1980’s.
“As a result my territory was streamlined and I concentrated on servicing the Liverpool Plains for the next few years.”
“I still travel a lot up and down the coast, and up to the Kimberleys and across the Territory. I love it and have recently returned from a trip to Kununurra and the Territory.”
Rob said one of the highlights of his career with Pacific Seeds had been the comradery with the team over the years.
“I’m still close to a lot of the people I’ve met along the way within this company, my colleagues and the farmers I’ve met, particularly the farmers I have conducted trials with over the years,” he said.
“The company should really have the motto one in, all in by now – because we’ve really all pitched in over the years to help each other out, particularly between divisions within the company when the pressure was on.”
“Aside from the friends I’ve made working with the company, I’ve also made a lot of farmer friends, particularly across the Liverpool Plains area and also in southern NSW with my involvement with corn.”
“There’s still a lot of people who like direct contact with representatives out in the field today – who value having someone come and see them to talk through their options, and that’s what I like doing.”
Pacific Seeds products are produced and supplied by Advanta Seeds.
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Featured Image: Rob McCarron. Image supplied by Pacific Seeds.