Inaugural female president to lead the Australian Wagyu Association Board

AWA new President and Board for 2018-19

The Australian Wagyu Association Annual General Meeting was held Wednesday 31st October 2018, with the first meeting of the new AWA Board held Thursday 1st of November.

In a first for the Association in its 30-year history, the first woman to hold the position of President of the AWA has been decided.

The AWA is delighted to announce our 12th President, Mrs Chantal Winter, effective as of the 1st of November 2018.

The Office Bearers of the AWA Board for the 2018-19 period are:

President Chantal Winter
Senior Vice President Mike Buchanan
Junior Vice President Selwyn Maller
Treasurer Charles Perry

Newly appointed Board Member Sharon Oates

Returning Board Members:
Peter Cabassi
Peter Gilmour
Peter Krause
John Spreadborough
Lorna Tomkinson


Both Lorna Tomkinson and Chantal Winter were both re-appointed to the AWA Board following the 2018 Board election process.

Chantal, with her husband Anthony are the managers of Macquarie Wagyu, located on the Southern Downs region of Queensland south-west of Toowoomba. A specialist in long-feed feedlot, the couple have been managing the property for more than 10 years. The property joins around 700 fullblood females annually. Previously a cattle care auditor, Chantal is well versed in genetics, breeding, carcase outcomes and care of Wagyu cattle and has served on the AWA Board for more than five years.

“It is an exciting time to be part of the Wagyu industry,” said Chantal. “As we move forward I want to ensure that our members have access to learn and utilise Wagyu breeding tools so that we can see an overall improvement in Wagyu genetics to give our customers the very best eating experience.”

Retiring from the Board is Joanne Christiansen. The matriarch of Pinnacle Wagyu, Joanne is a breeder of Wagyu and Stock Horses in Roma, Queensland, established in 1998 with her late husband Peter. Joanne has served on the Board for a number of years providing the Association with a great deal of knowledge and advice for the Wagyu industry. We would like to extend to Joanne our deepest thanks for her services to the industry and the Association.

Sharon Oates was appointed to the AWA Board through the 2018 Board election process. Sharon is well known in Wagyu circles for her work with Oasis Collection Centre, a business that provides embryo collection services, specialising in Wagyu. With a wealth of experience in breeding, export and processing, Sharon is keen to bring her knowledge to the Board to assist with the improvement of the breed for all Wagyu members.

Farewell to an outstanding President

The 2018 AGM gave members an opportunity to thank the 11th President of the AWA, Mr Peter Gilmour who has represented the Board in this capacity for the past three years. In that time, Peter has overseen the introduction of many strategic platforms including BreedObject $Indexes, BREEDPLAN Single-Step, the transition from MiP to SNP and the commissioning of the MIJ-30 carcase assessment camera.  Peter continues on the AWA Board as a Director for the 2018-19 year.

“It has been a pleasure to work with Peter during his tenure as President,” said Dr Matt McDonagh, AWA CEO. “His business insights and leadership have served the Australian Wagyu Association well to take us through a busy time in terms of strategic planning, member growth and development of Wagyu breeding tools.

“We are fortunate to have Peter remain on the Board to continue with that level of wisdom and to assist Chantal with her transition to President.”

Important Notice and Disclaimer

It is very important that you appreciate when viewing the AWA database that the information contained on the AWA database, including but not limited to pedigree, DNA information, Estimated Breeding Values (EBVs) and Index values, is based on data supplied by members and/or third parties.

Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information reported through AWA, AWA officers and employees assume no responsibility for its content, use or interpretation. AWA disclaims all liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs you may incur as a result of the use by you of the data on this AWA database and the information supplied by ABRI and AGBU being inaccurate or incomplete in any way for any reason.

Regarding EBVs and Index values, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • EBVs are derived using Wagyu Single Step BREEDPLAN technology developed independently by the Animal Genetics and Breeding Unit (AGBU), using the information contained within the AWA database.
  • AGBU is a joint venture of NSW Department of Primary Industries and the University of New England, which receives funding for this purpose from Meat and Livestock Australia Limited.
  • AWA relies solely on advice provided by AGBU and ABRI in accepting Wagyu Single Step BREEDPLAN software.
  • EBVs published in Wagyu Single Step BREEDPLAN are estimates of genetic potential of individual animals and may not reflect the raw animal phenotype.
  • EBVs can only be directly compared to other EBVs calculated in the same monthly Wagyu Group BREEDPLAN analysis.

Regarding pedigree and DNA testing results submitted to the AWA, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • Pedigree and DNA data submitted and supplied to AWA may have errors in it which cannot be detected without further DNA testing.
  • Technology may have advanced since a particular test was undertaken so that previous inaccuracies which were not detectable are now able to be detected by current testing technology.
  • AWA estimates that less than 1% of the pedigree entries, ownership or breeding details in the AWA Herdbook may have errors or which may be misleading. For this reason, users ought to consider if they need to obtain independent testing of the relevant animal (if possible) to ensure that the data is accurate.

Regarding prefectural content, it is very important to appreciate, and you need to be aware that:

  • Prefectural content is based on the estimation of prefectural origin from Japanese breeding records of 201 foundation sires and 168 foundation dams.  As genotype-based parent verification is not used in Japan, and full Japanese registration certificates are not available for all foundation animals, exact prefectural composition for these sires and dams cannot be validated.
  • The calculation of prefectural content for Australian Herdbook animals relies on the accuracy of pedigree records and DNA samples provided by AWA members.
  • The reporting of prefectural content for animals within the AWA Herdbook relies on the calculation provided by ABRI.

If you consider that you do not understand or appreciate the nature and extent of the data provided on this website or the EBVs of a particular animal, then AWA strongly recommends that you seek independent expert advice.