Cropping

GrainCorp mega site-receivals confirm crop fortunes

Henry Wells, January 12, 2017

ASX-listed GrainCorp Ltd (GNC) receival sites covering the vast area of the eastern states cropping belt have received some record tonnages, highlighting the stroke of fortune that the good season delivered to growers, especially in western Victoria, north-western NSW and southernmost Queensland.

The largest intake this year was at Coonamble GrainCorp depot which received 400,000 tonnes from the 2016-17 harvest, Walgett and Thallon received nearly 300,000t. Barellan, Warracknabeal and Quambatook are on the way to receiving close to 200,000t, GrainCorp’s Nigel Lotz said in a statement.

Harvest receivals into GNC storages recently surpassed 12 million tonnes (Mt), volumes last experienced six years ago from the 2010-11 harvest.

“While harvest is almost complete in Queensland and New South Wales, we expect the harvest in Victoria will continue up to Australia Day…grain quality has also been good, especially across canola and wheat,” Mr Lotz said.

3000 harvest-time employees

To meet the demands of the bigger crop, GNC boosted employment of harvest casuals by 60pc to 3000 roles compared to last year.

“Prior to harvest we spent $21 million on improvements, including new stackers and upgrading existing bunkers and equipment.”

Moving the crop to consumer, local and export

While network development often focuses on receivals capacity from growers, towards larger, more efficient country silos for more segregations and better turnaround times, a matching task applies to around 12Mt outturn to customers, local and overseas.

“We have already moved over 1 million tonnes of grain from our silos to sub-terminals and ports. We have secured additional rail and road capacity to ship this grain, with the shipping stem heavily booked for the next six months,” Mr Lotz said.

Sites receiving record or near-record quantities this year are Barellan, Boort, Burren Junction, Calleen, Carwarp, Charlton, Coonamble, Cryon, Cunningar, Deniliquin, Elmore, Euabalong West, Gilgandra, Hillston, Manildra, Merriwagga, Murchison East, Nhill, Quambatook, Rand, Speed, Talwood, Thallon, Walgett, Warracknabeal and Wycheproof.

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