Record harvest outloading half finished

26 Jun, 2014 02:00 AM
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6
 
At the Dumbleyung CBH terminal, contract carriers moved grain from the open bulkhead to the over-rail cells so it could be loaded onto a train bound for the Albany port. At the end of last week 68,123 tonnes was still to be railed out of Dumbleyung.
In terms of the entire State-wide outloading task, we are absolutely over half way
At the Dumbleyung CBH terminal, contract carriers moved grain from the open bulkhead to the over-rail cells so it could be loaded onto a train bound for the Albany port. At the end of last week 68,123 tonnes was still to be railed out of Dumbleyung.

AS OF last Friday afternoon, about 46,525 tonnes of grain was left at CBH's Kondinin and Kondinin 2 delivery sites.

More than 68,000t was still at Dumbleyung, and numerous other open and closed bulkheads throughout the Wheatbelt were teeming with grain.

But CBH acting general manager of operations Andrew Mencshelyi said there was no need for alarm.

Despite the sizeable amount of grain still spread throughout the State's grain belt, the majority of it would be cleared from the decks before the 2014/15 harvest.

Mr Mencshelyi said because growers in the Geraldton zone had an average-sized crop in the 2013/14 season, stored grain at delivery sites throughout the northern parts of the grain belt had started to reach low levels.

And he said outloading of stores throughout the Esperance port zone was more than half way complete.

But the Kwinana and Albany zones were a different story.

Mr Mencshelyi said because the bulk of the 2013/14 record harvest was produced there, outloading had a long way to go and the large majority of CBH's resources had been directed there.

"In terms of the entire State-wide outloading task, we are absolutely over half way," he said.

"The majority of the grain still to be moved is wheat and there are still significant pockets of grain to be moved in the eastern Wheatbelt where Tier 3 lines will soon close."

Mr Mencshelyi confirmed about 875,000t would need to be removed from the Tier 3 zone once the lines were placed into care and maintenance by Brookfield Rail on June 30.

He said for now CBH's operations team was trying to make the most of its 16 rapid rail facilities at sites such as Kulin, Lake Grace, Newdegate and Hyden, to move as many tonnes to port as quickly, safely and efficiently as possible.

"At our rapid rail sites, which are usually installed at the end of the line, the loading rates are around 1000 tonnes an hour," Mr Mencshelyi said.

"Trains at rail-loading sites such as Dumbleyung fill at about 250t an hour."

He said CBH expected to carry-in as much grain as it did last year.

"We still had 1.5 million tonnes of carry over going into harvest last year and going into the next harvest we'll probably still have about 1.5mt," Mr Mencshelyi said.

"There may be a couple of hundred thousand tonnes more.

"We probably won't get the whole lot out but that's not unlike any other year."

In May the CBH operations team broke its all-time monthly shipping record by 30 per cent.

It shipped 9mt to the end of the month and Mr Mencshelyi believed CBH would probably ship an added 1mt this month.

"We've already moved about 10mt this year from a shipping perspective," he said.

"We're planning for about 1mt a month to leave WA shores between now and harvest."

Mr Mencshelyi said the container trade had proven to be very strong this year, thanks to high demand from countries such as the Philippines, which didn't have the capacity to deal with bulk grain vessels.

WA's usual domestic out-turn had also stepped up the pace.

"Shipping will continue right through until harvest – it doesn't ever stop," Mr Mencshelyi said.

"Shipping slots up until the end of October are full and the new season slots haven't been allocated yet."

Mr Mencshelyi said his CBH operations team had only received about 25 per cent of its members' grower estimate forms.

He strongly encouraged growers to complete and submit their forms as soon as possible to help CBH with its storage planning task for the upcoming harvest.

It was worth noting CBH's marketing and trading team has traded upwards of 10mt of grain so far this year.

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READER COMMENTS

Deregul8
26/06/2014 6:35:57 AM, on Farm Weekly

That is CBH's job. After all there is more than fair financial windfall from growers for doing so. The fact remains Australia has some of the highest storage and handling costs in the world. Competition is badly needed and thankfully it has begun to arrive down here in the Bunbury catchment.
Jock Munro
26/06/2014 11:48:28 AM, on The Land

Well done CBH-Western Australian growers are very fortunate indeed. An efficient cost effective service for producers. In the Eastern States we are being gouged without mercy since we lost the leverage that the National Pooling arrangement gave us.
dunart
27/06/2014 6:41:40 AM, on Farm Weekly

WA has some of the most efficient farm to port movement of grain in the world, and considering Australia's very high cost of doing business, very cost effective as well. over the last 40 years, cost increases has been well below the inflation rate. a few years ago, had some eastern states friends come over for a visit, and they were stunned!
boris
27/06/2014 10:39:06 AM, on Farm Weekly

It is interesting that CBH no longer promote itself as grower owned. I suppose that claim is easily challenged because the grower has no formal ownership of the company. The competition know their really isnt anything a non-distributing co-op can do to galvanize loyalty, hense the grower will choose the least cost pathway to port. Once CBH looses its ability to cross subsidize the inefficient sections of the network the model will crumble. The first layer of bricks are hitting the ground as Bunge loads the first shipment of wheat out of a new port at Bunbury.
seethelight
27/06/2014 10:50:16 AM, on Farm Weekly

Dunart says that CBH has the most efficient farm to port grain movement in the world. His basis for comparison must not include grain originating from Blacksea Ports or the Pacific NorthWest and US gulf Ports.Nor is CBH cheaper or more efficient than Bunge at Bunbury Port.WA farmers try to bypass the CBH network where ever they can but still pay a full-service charge even when they deliver direct to port.Apart from these and a few other exceptions I would agree with Dunart that CBH is the greatest Grain Handler in the world.
wafarmer
5/07/2014 10:33:24 AM, on Farm Weekly

To all CBH knockers and yes they are not perfect be careful what you wish for. As for Bunbury yes they are ma Co operative so tend to apply their funds where it is generated.

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