THERE is a "lot of change to come" according to Australian Olive Association chief executive officer, Greg Seymour.
Speaking this week at his first National Olive Industry Conference since taking up the reins in March this year, Mr Seymour said he felt there was a cautious optimism among growers he'd spoken to while coming up to speed with the industry.
"My understanding is that you've had some very tough times over the last few years and we are starting to see a movement in price and we are starting to see an enthusiasm and talk about expansion already in the industry," he said.
"The thing that we've learnt out of the tough times is that you have to be really, really efficient."
The National Olive Industry Conference and Trade Exhibition is being held at the Adelaide Convention Centre with an underlying theme of productivity.
Mr Seymour reflected briefly on his 19 years as the Australian Mushroom Growers’ Association (AMGA) general manager and the growth that had occurred in that industry during that time.
He said while he was impressed with the dedication stakeholders had to the olive industry, there was work still to be done.
"But we need to do that in a way that doesn't alarm people and that really understands the essence of what drives the expectations of the people who we are providing services for," he said.
Mr Seymour outlined some of the changes which had occurred already, including the altering to the organisation's financial system and the purchase of Olive Grower and Processor magazine.
He mentioned that the AOA had decided not to continue with a memorandum of understanding it had with Olives South Australia and the West Australian Olive Council, with the aim of creating AOA state branches for longer term partnerships and relationships.
"It just makes commonsense and it's commercial reality that you've got to be able to stand side-by-side so you'll start to see more and more of that," he said.
Advocacy will also be a major part of Mr Seymour's role with his previous experience in dealing with Canberra coming into play.