WESTERN Australian growers have as of today delivered more than 14 million tonnes (Mt) of grain into the CBH network, passing the five-year receivals average of 13.9Mt, despite challenging seasonal conditions.
Chief operations officer Ben Macnamara said harvest was not over yet.
“For Western Australian growers to produce an above-average crop in a year when rainfall and availability to subsoil moisture has been well below-average is a remarkable achievement,” Mr Macnamara said.
“It’s a testament to the advanced and innovative farming practices adopted by our growers, and the resilience of our grain varieties.
Mr Macnamara said several sites would close for the season over the next fortnight as receivals continued to taper off.
Growers have slowed their selling this week as the grower market strengthens, with prices up $5 per tonne to $322/t free in store (FIS) Kwinana.Over the past 10 days, prices have risen $20/t on the back of Russia introducing an export tax from February.
This tax will remain in place until the Russian new crop arrives in June-July, giving Australia the opportunity to capture demand during the first half of the year.
The Australian trade is indicating it has sold out for the first quarter of 2021, with some also sold out to May, which demonstrates positive end-user demand.
With the WA wheat crop looking to exceed 9Mt, the Australian crop is now expected to be closer to 35Mt, the largest since 2016-17.
Barley, canola mixed
The barley market traded sideways this week as the trade saw limited end-user demand and a lack of grower interest in selling additional quantities.
This week, grower prices for feed hovered around $260/t FIS Kwinana, and showed little sign of breaking out in either direction.
A few quiet weeks are anticipated as growers wrap up harvest and look to go on holidays.
In addition, most end-users are covered for the first quarter of 2021, so may take a break until the New Year.
The canola market firmed this week, with grower prices ending the week at $635/t FIS Kwinana.
While prices are still some way from the $670/t paid earlier in November, values have stopped drifting lower.
Strong demand for vegetable oils, particularly in China, is seeing crushers in Canada, the Middle East and potentially Europe redirecting oil stocks to China at very attractive margins.
While this demand remains, prices are expected to stay relatively buoyant in the short term.
Deliveries in the Geraldton Zone have tailed off as growers complete harvest.
Overall, they have had a positive season with yields exceeding expectations.
The initial receivals estimate for the zone has been surpassed, and quality has been very good overall.
Wheat has made up more than 70pc of receivals, with lupins, canola and barley making up the remaining tonnes.
Wheat has made up more than 70pc of receivals, with barley, canola, oats and lupins making up the remaining tonnes.
Quality remains good, particularly in light of significant rainfall over the harvest period.
The majority of growers across the zone are expected to be finished harvest by Christmas, with only a few continuing into the New Year.
Several sites are beginning to close as growers finish their harvest programs.
Kwinana South Zone
Grain deliveries have slowed in Kwinana South as growers come to the end of their harvest programs,.
Wheat has made up more than 40pc of receivals, with barley, canola, oats and lupins making up the remaining tonnes.
Remaining deliveries are predominantly wheat, and quality remains good across the zone as sites begin to close for this harvest.
Several rain events slowed harvest receivals this week.
Barley has made up more than 40pc of receivals, with wheat, canola, oats and lupins making up the remaining tonnes.
ASW has made up the bulk of wheat deliveries.
Quality has become variable in some parts of the zone, and this is being monitored.
Most growers in northern areas of the zone are finishing harvest, and most southern growers expect to complete their programs post-Christmas or early in the New Year provided weather is favourable.
Several sites have started to fill and work is underway to outload grain to create more space for growers.
Harvest is drawing to a close in the Esperance Zone, with most growers now finished.
Most deliveries remaining are from on-farm storage.
Wheat has made up almost half of receivals, with barley, canola, field peas and lupins making up the remaining tonnes.
Sites will be closing over the coming days as deliveries dwindle.
Most sites are expected to be closed by Christmas, with only Esperance remaining open after the break.
Source: CBH Group