It is with great sadness that we advise of the passing of Emeritus Professor Peter Spradbrow AM, a founding figure of the KYEEMA Foundation.
Condolences and tributes have come in from people working with village chickens all over the globe, recognising the immense contribution Peter made to improving rural livelihoods, particularly through his work on Newcastle disease.
Peter was a founding member of the KYEEMA Foundation and the International Rural Poultry Centre (IRPC) and remained on the Board of KYEEMA until December last year, when he felt it was time he retired. His contributions to KYEEMA and the IRPC have been invaluable and will be greatly missed.
For the best part of his long and outstanding career in the University of Queensland’s School of Veterinary Science, Peter led research that resulted in the development of thermotolerant Newcastle disease vaccines. These vaccines, suitable for protecting village chickens where refrigeration is not available, continue to be a highly valued contribution to Australia’s aid and development program. With support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Peter’s work went beyond the vaccines, resulting in a sustainable Newcastle disease control model that has helped to improve village poultry production in countries throughout Asia and Africa. This model continues to alleviate poverty for the most vulnerable people in resource-poor regions and serves as a platform for improving Food Security.