Bill Crabtree

Bill Crabtree

Bill Crabtree

Farmer, Western Australia

Bill owns 7,000 acres of arable land in Western Australia at the edge of the Australian Outback, one of the most arid regions in the world. This year he leased another 7,000 acres for 6 years. He grows cool season crops including wheat and canola and has also grown barley, lupins and triticale. Bill has been a long-time supporter and researcher of farmer access to innovative technologies. He’s also a professional agronomist. Bill has maintained a keen and active role in promoting GM crop technology since it was first introduced globally in 1996, but he became a strong vocal advocate beginning in 2004. That’s the year the Western Australian (WA) government introduced a moratorium against GM crops as Liberty Link and Roundup Ready canola were registered through the Australian Office of Gene Technology Regulator. This stopped GM crop development in WA. Bill was an Australian pioneer in the research and promotion of no-till practices combined with GM technology. He is interested in helping with some of the production challenges in Africa created by the slow uptake of no-till agriculture and the challenge of pests, diseases, nutrition, and soil health. He has a B.Ag.Sci and M.Sci in soil nutrition from the University of Western Australia and he has written a book called “Search for Sustainability in Dryland Agriculture.”