The Agricultural Bureau of South Australia
The Agricultural Bureau of South Australia is a not-for-profit organisation run by farmers for farmers. Membership is for everyone associated with or interested in farming, agricultural development and education. The Bureau helps to bridge the gap between scientist and farmer and assists its members in working together on issues of common interest.
The Bureau has a proud history in South Australia, serving agriculture since 1888. There are around 80 active branches spread throughout the state, with groups meeting regularly to exchange ideas, discuss farming practices and issues and work on common challenges together.
The Advisory Board of Agriculture
The Advisory Board of Agriculture (ABA) is the Bureau's governing body. Made up of representatives from the Bureau regions, government departments, the University of Adelaide and Women in Agriculture and Business, it provides policy advice and recommendations on agricultural matters to the State Government, including direct advice to the Minister for Agriculture, Food and Fisheries.
In 1887, an English-born printer named Albert Molineux suggested establishing an Agricultural Bureau in South Australia.
On the 27th of February 1888, the Government adopted his suggestion and the inaugural meeting of the Central Agricultural Bureau of South Australia was held on the 10th of April 1888.
The Central Agricultural Bureau was the precursor to the Advisory Board of Agriculture, the present-day governing body of the Bureau. Set up to advise the Minister of Agriculture on farming matters and to act as the governing body for the Agricultural Bureau of SA, the Central Bureau had 10 members.
There had been a number of local agricultural associations and farmers’ clubs in South Australia since soon after settlement in 1836. When the Central Agricultural Bureau was created, it set about encouraging the establishment of local Bureau Branches.
In its first 12 months, it supported the founding of branches in a dozen rural areas, including Mannum, Millicent, Nuriootpa, Stansbury, Burra and Gumeracha. Gumeracha, Millicent and Nuriootpa (now known as Angaston) are all still operating and are just three of around 80 active branches across the state with nearly 1400 members.
2013: 125 years of the Ag Bureau
2013 marks 125 years since the Agricultural Bureau of South Australia was first established, with celebrations of this milestone across the state.