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35 years experience

Agronico is a proud family owned business, based in the small Tasmanian town of Spreyton.

Agronico was formed in 1985 by agronomist Julian Shaw (BAgrSc) who with 9 years prior experience working for Glaxo Smith Kline in the development of effective weed control in the poppy industry in Tasmania identified the need for independent agronomy advice. The company began as a consultancy business, providing advice to growers, but early on there was a noticeable need for a research division to solve technical problems. By the early 1990’s Agronico had grown to 10+ employees and 2 divisions and were steadily increasing contracts with growers and agri-business across the state.

In 1997 Agronico’s R&D team started running trials on hydroponic potatoes. These trials indicated the method had the potential to improve the efficiency of potato propagation. These trials were supported in 2001 with an AusIndustry grant for innovation. Another major AusIndustry supported research project looked at developing processes for production of high quality predictable seed potato tubers, which formed the bases for the development of a successful seed potato production business.

The company has seen significant growth in the last 5 years and now has in addition 19 full time employees, over 20 casual employees involved in the potato grading and packing operation, and produces nearly a quarter of a million minitubers and 8,000 tonnes of seed potatoes.

With a state of the art factory and cool store opened in July 2017, and an extension in 2019 Agronico is well positioned to increase varieties and quantities into the future.

Our Story

Cool Timeline

September 23

Agronico was founded

Agronico was founded by agronomist Julian Shaw (BAgrSc) as a consultancy business, providing independent advice to growers.
January 1

Initial growth

Agronico had grown to 10+ employees and 2 divisions with increasing contracts for growers and agri-business across TAS.
July 4

Hydroponic minituber trials

In 1997 Agronico’s R&D team started running trials on hydroponic potatoes. These trials indicated the method had the potential to improve the efficiency of potato propagation.
November 3

AusIndustry grant

These trials were supported in 2001 with an AusIndustry grant for innovation. The effect of the grant was to take this from an idea to a fledgling commercial business.
April 20

A second grant

AusIndustry provided a further grant to develop processes for production of high quality predictable seed potato tubers.
August 9

Building a factory

Agronico purchases the property at 4 Cockers Creek, Spreyton and converts a factory for efficient potato grading and cutting.
September 16

A further grant

A further grant allowed expansion to a wire mesh potato grader which provided efficiency and minimised any handling damage to the potatoes.
July 26

Largest potato coolstore in Tasmania open

Agronico opens a state of the art coolstore in Spreyton, the largest of its kind in Tasmania.
February 27

Regional jobs and investment grant

Agronico was chosen to be one of the 50 projects to financially benefit from the federal and state government’s jointly funded Regional Jobs and Investment Package.  The grant will assist in the expansion of the current Coolstore to double its capacity. When complete the project will create 19 jobs during construction…
August 22

Coolstore Extension Complete

Agronico’s expanded coolstore opens. The coolstore will hold almost 14 and a half thousand tonnes of potatoes, opening the service to more Tasmanian farmers.
March 2

Online Store Launched

After numerous requests Agronico opens an online store for sales of some of our varieties to home gardeners.
November 15

Julian Shaw Retires

Julian Shaw has announced his retirement from Agronico as Managing Director, leaving the company in good hands and with a bright future continuing to lead and innovate in agricultural services in Tasmania.

Our management team

Robert Graham
Robert Graham
Chief Executive Officer
Stewart McKay
Stewart McKay
Minituber Operations Manager
Les Ollington
Les Ollington
Operations Manager
Ken Clarke
Ken Clarke
Chief Finance Officer
Jamie Keay
Jamie Keay
Factory Manager
Robert Shaw
Robert Shaw
Chief Information Officer
Barry Wyllie
Barry Wyllie
Field Operations Manager
Kate Shaw
Kate Shaw
Marketing Manager
Chris Merry
Chris Merry
Senior Agronomist

Our Customers

I have been buying seed potatoes from Agronico for close to 10 years. I can produce potato crops averaging 65-70 tonnes p/ha and have had seasons in excess of 75 tonnes p/ha. I enjoy the relationship I have with Agronico and find them very easy to deal with. They keep me in the loop throughout the ordering and delivery process. I have no problems recommending Agronico Seed Potatoes.
Nigel WadeTable Cape Alliance
I have been purchasing Agronico seed for the last 5 years and have found that my potato yields have increased to about 62 t/ha on average. The improvements are a combination of factors including seed quality and I am now more confident of producing good crops of potatoes.  The evenness of Agronico's seed has been a great advantage.
Neil JohnsonPotato Grower
Building Agronico's cool storage facility has been as good as it gets! This large scale project went very smoothly.  The sheer size of this building gave Bison the opportunity to showcase our efficient construction processes while utilizing some of our larger construction equipment.  I must say I admire owner Julian Shaw and his team for this bold move and trust the building serves them well in the future of seed production.
David BissetProject Manager Bison Constructions
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