Dairysafe is farewelling two of its valued and long-standing employees – Fiona Little, our Food Safety Officer, and Rocco Galluccio, our Dairysafe Accountant.
Fiona and Rocco have delivered outstanding service to the organisation and to industry over many years, and both are very well known.
“The knowledge that Fiona and Rocco hold will be sorely missed, however they’ve shared much of their critical information and wisdom with the team,” said Geoff Raven, CEO of Dairysafe.
“Congratulations Fiona and Rocco – thank you from the Dairysafe team past and present and enjoy your retirement.”
Fiona has dedicated 41 years of service to the South Australian dairy industry and is well respected by those in the South Australian dairy industry, particularly dairy farmers.
Fiona graduated from Roseworthy Agricultural College in 1978, attaining the Diploma of Applied Science in Agriculture. She commenced with the Milk Board as a Supervisor in 1981 and progressed to District Supervisor (Northern) in 1982.
The Milk Board regulated production, treatment, storage and delivery of milk and cream in the metropolitan milk supply area, and the metropolitan milk distribution area. It also conducted laboratory services, fixed milk prices, controlled and zoned retail vendors, and promoted milk and cream. Supervisors were responsible for farms, processors and vendors.
On 1 July 1993 the Dairy Industry Act 1992 came into effect, repealing the Metropolitan Milk Supply Act 1946 and the Dairy Industry Act 1928, thereby dissolving the Milk Board. The Dairy Authority of South Australia was established to replace the Milk Board and Fiona was employed as Farm Quality Supervisor to oversee company inspection of farms and to inspect unpasteurised milk producers.
Of significance was the Authority’s role in working with small manufacturers to implement HACCP quality assurance programs. At the same time, the Authority, in conjunction with all other jurisdictions, commenced the Australian Milk Residue Analysis Survey of tanker milk state-wide, an important program for market access purposes, which continues today.
Fiona considers developing food safety programs and an audit program for dairy farmers to be one of the most significant aspects of her career. The introduction of programs and audits replaced inspection in 1999, where Fiona was responsible for inspecting dairy farms based on their milk quality results.
Fiona has provided unparalleled service to the South Australian dairy industry for 41 years in her roles involving milk quality and food safety regulation.
Rocco has been working in the dairy Industry for nearly 50 years and has gained extensive experience in the various senior management roles during his working life.
Rocco began working at Farmers Union in 1973 as an assistant Internal Auditor, and moved up the ranks to hold senior role as Financial Controller at Southern Farmers Co-op.
In 1990 Southern Farmers was floated on the stock exchange under the name National Dairies which later became National Foods. National Foods’ vision was to become a national dairy company, offering milk, yogurt, dairy desserts and cheese plants across the nation.
Rocco held the position of Financial Controller for 10 years and was a key member of the SA executive management team that was responsible for the construction of the new milk processing plant at Salisbury in 1999.
In 1999, Rocco took up a corporate role as National Milk Supply Manager, responsible for negotiating milk supply contracts with some 600 dairy farmers across Australia.
In 2001, Rocco moved into a new role of General Manager of GN Distributors being a Food Service business within the National Foods group with the plan to improve the financial position and then to divest the business, which he delivered.
During Rocco’s working life he has participated on many Industry boards such as Metropolitan milk equalisation committee, Dairy SA Regional Development Program, SA Milk Haulage and the Dairy Industry Association of SA as a committee member, Vice President and State President.
Rocco also was on the National DIAA committee and in 1998 was Federal President.
In 1995, Rocco was instrumental in the management of the deregulation process in South Australia with the formation of a state-wide equalisation scheme for market milk.
Rocco retired in 2002, but this did not last long. With his accounting background, he found himself working as a part time accountant at the Dairy Authority of South Australia (Dairysafe).
Rocco is a recipient of the Brenton Higgins Memorial Trophy for his exceptional service to the South Australian dairy industry over many years.
Rocco has provided tireless service to Dairysafe for 20 years with his wisdom and astute financial management being the mainstay of the organisation.