Grain SA today announced that Dr Pieter Taljaard is appointed as the organisation’s new CEO. He will take over the reins from Jannie de Villiers from 1 September 2021 following Jannie’s earlier announcement that he will be stepping down as CEO at the end of August.
Pieter is well known in the agricultural sector and brings a wealth of expertise to this role, having served in a number of senior leadership capacities over the past years, currently as the Cereals and Industrial Crops Go-to-market strategy Lead at Bayer Crop Science. He worked with Grain SA for many years in his capacity at Bayer, Monsanto, NWK and as lecturer at UFS.
Pieter obtained his PhD in Agricultural Economics at the University of the Free State and spent the past six years in the seed industry. He is passionate about agriculture, which has also been his hobby as a part-time farmer for the past 19 years and he has a trained background in Agriculture and Applied Economics, specialising in Consumer and Production Economics, Econometrics as well as Mathematical Optimisation.
The appointment of Pieter follows a thorough recruitment process overseen by a special Committee of the Executive using the recruitment company The Talent Connection, which saw a wide variety of exceptional candidates vetted and interviewed. “It was very crucial for Grain SA to make the right appointment that can lead the organisation into the next era. Pieter has vast experience in the grain sector and worked very closely with farmers.” Derek Mathews, chairperson of Grain SA said.
Mathews closed in saying, “I would also like to use this opportunity to sincerely thank Jannie for his years of commitment and hard work to bring the organisation where it is today, as he now steps down as CEO. He will not be lost to agriculture and his mentorship and spiritual journey will continue to influence the industry in times ahead. We wish him all the best of luck for the future.”