Ryde Rotarian. Eric Ernest Bond, 9.2.1918 - 1.3.2013, passed away peacefully at home. Late of East Lindfield. Much loved husband of Pat, loving father and father-in-law of Cathy and Ross, Julie and Garry. Cherished grandfather of Nicholas, Alexander, Hannah, Rebecca, Kate, Natasha and Sarah. Devoted companion of Sam.
Family and friends of ERIC attended his Funeral Service, held at Macquarie Park Crematorium, North Ryde, in the Camellia Chapel on Wednesday March 6, 2013. Eric was one our our most esteemed members, having been awarded an A.M. and having a scientific career that was responsible for phenomenal improvements in food production and nutrition across the globe, as a lead scientist at the CSIRO
From Eric's biography, that he provided our club in 2012:
All my working life, covering some 50 years, has been associated with the cereal industry – wheat, flour milling and bread. Starting as a young laboratory assistant in 1934 – the tail end of the great depression – with a company making then newly developed compressed yeast for the bread industry, where I was delegated to assist with testing required by the 1934–36 Royal Commission into the three industries.
From there I was appointed Cereal Chemist with the Victorian Dept of Agriculture. At the outbreak of war I was appointed Chief Chemist of Bruntons, a large flour milling company in NSW and Victoria, setting up central laboratories in Sydney as part of wartime food control. After the war, another Royal Commission into the Bread Industry resulted in the establishment, in 1947, of the Bread Research Institute of Australia to which I was appointed founding Director. The BRI worked closely with CSIRO which, in 1957, established the Wheat Research Unit with me as Officer in Charge. I remained in those dual positions until my retirement in 1983.
My work has entailed a great deal of time overseas. As President of the International Association for Cereal Chemistry with headquarters in Vienna, from 1970–72 – the cold war period, I spent much time in countries east and west of the Berlin wall. As well there were many visits to overseas countries – established and prospective markets for our wheat. Consider these three situations in the work place:
It is 1970 and I am in Santiago, Chile. I receive an invitation from a large company in the Argentine to come up to Buenos Aires for the weekend. Buy a ticket, fly up to BA, I am stopped at customs – no visa. I was being ushered away to the transit lounge when a small, dark, man steps forward and whispers conspiratorially to the customs man. I am released. ‘Nickinson’, the said man, whispers to me “all we have to do now is sign a false declaration and then off to BA for the weekend”. Was it the truth?
It is 1973, I am in South Africa in the days of Apartheid – I am attending a meeting of the South African Wheat Board as a consultant. I place before it a recommendation made on behalf of senior scientific staff that a black worker in the laboratory, doing excellent scientific work should be recognized, and classified, as the lowest grade of technical assistant and not, as currently classified, labourer/cleaner. There was a stoney silence from the Board of predominantly Afrikaaner farmers then ‘Next Business’. Was it fair to all concerned?
It is 1969, I am in Moscow, in the office of my good friend and predecessor as President, of the International Association, Prof. Trisviatsky, Director of the Soviet Union Grain Research Organisation. A staunch member of the Communist Party, he is concerned about a delicate decision he is to take as President. I suggested a way out of his dilemma (a democratic way) would be to appoint a sub-committee to recommend. He requested that I arrange it. I take the result to Trisviatsky – it solves his problem. Relieved, he jumps up, takes a bottle of Vodka from a cupboard and we drink a toast to what he describes as a very democratic solution. Did it build goodwill and better friendships? and Was it beneficial to all concerned?