Recent comments by: Mark Hoskinson

Agribusiness

Thank you John. Facts read a lot stronger than hearsay and leaked information . I would welcome more facts on what GGLs Board and it's Policy group is doing on behalf of its members instead of the recent spat of harsh comment coming conveniently just before the Board Election. Some positive news on the Grains Industry would be welcome.
WTF anyone that does not require security of payment is truly blessed in these days of every cents counts and any loss could see you forced to sell up from greedy and ruthless people. It is strange to now see the growers that supported deregulation because they wanted to export their own wheat now not export one grain themselves. Not the result they were looking for.
Percy we now have growers diversifying what they grow due to the horrendous risk in growing wheat alone. And because of this fact many have been ripped off by the long trail of Traders that have gone broke and left growers horribly out of pocket. You are right and my point of forming a Grower East coast Coop would cover most if not all the grains grown in the east as we have no one out there except CBH promoting Australian grain. The best thing that has happened since deregulation is CBH buying into Oat mills in the east as we now have a market which we are guaranteed of payment.
The loss of the Golden rewards, the dramatic increase in freight rates and the loss of the Industry good functions alone has cost us a hell of a lot of money. Combine that with the foreign millers complaining about the quality they are receiving after the traders have blended it will cost us even more in the long run. Typical of Government intervention into market systems they have no idea about and used Australian wheat growers as Political toys.
The only option for East coast growers is to form a sister Coop to CBH as in the West Growers have survived Deregulation because of CBH.
All I require as a Grains Levy payer is an Accountable and truly representive RO holder which we have been unable to achieve to date. There are to many so called Industry leaders lining up to grab high paid Industry representive jobs and forget who they are supposed to represent. So much for the DAFF Criteria test for the RO holder but at least the days of free rain are over and the joint holders are both under the spot light.
Put your real name to your response 'Here we go again?' and lets have a real debate. There is a big difference between a Corporatized Graincorp and a Co-op. One thing you are right about Fonterra is a good example of having to start somewhere. I think you will find after the dust of this upcoming harvest is finish you will see just how much growers have lost.
All deregulation has delivered is a lot of traders approaching customers and the cheapest price on the day wins the contract and the blending done is delivering a poor quality grain. Sacrificing our once Quality markets!
Time for Growers to be put back in the supply chain including re-establishing our Quality Grain sales overseas since these traders have Downgraded our Quality for their profit. I for one would Like Graincorp Storage and handling to be Purchased by growers and turn into a Grower Co-op based on CBH. Hiring CBH systems and expertise including rail to build on their successful model. We have lost all of the Industry good functions to the Trade as well as all our profits. The money is there to achieve this model but we need the will to do so by growers. A lot of modelling has already been done.
Reporting that NSW farmers store their grain at home is rubbish as well. While a small amount is stored on farm do you think ADM would bid an over priced figure for Graincorp if they did not think there was value in Storage handling and operating ports if there was no value in the east??
Cargill's and Grain corp and all the others have identified positives so why shouldn't a grower Co-op? Perhaps some of you should do some actual research into the truth and the facts?? The last thing growers want is to store grain on farm and to be available 24/7 to truck it out and keep the pest out!!!!
With no proposal on the table and little to no detail of any plan what so ever you fellas are getting fairly excited over bugger all. The fact maybe that this will cost CBH members nothing and in fact may well be financially beneficial. Blind comment with no detail is only scaremongering. Why not wait for the detail before going off half cocked?? NSWFarmer comment that this was going to cost eastern growers nothing is a load of rubbish as well. No one can expect to get a grower owned and controlled network simular to CBH without paying for it. Who said it was going to be a cost to CBH members?
Leon made a complete fool of himself at the last Senate enquiry and did not need any help doing so. It is on the Hansard if anyone cares to read it but it would be half an hour of your life that you would not get back. Leon I am told you have very few members and for some reason the Vocal minority continues to complain. You from what I am told have very little support in the West .

Cropping

The days of the Standing Proxy having much Influence over the outcome of the election is over. GGL phone campaign over the last 2 years has seen the Standing Proxy numbers dwindle I am informed. Yet we still have over past years seen a large number of undirected Proxies appointed to the Chairman to vote as the Board wishes usually toward the Two Board selected candidates. As with Standing Proxies this is all quite legal and above Board. To counter this Members are encouraged to read the material supplied, Do a Google search on the Candidate and make an informed vote.
All Traders should only be allowed to sign Contracts that have Bank Guarantee of payment attached to it as well as reduced terms of payment ie 7 days. If the Trader can not get a Bank Guarantee then you do not deal with them. This should have been done years ago. Also Grain Traders that have failed in the past and left huge unpaid debts to growers should not be allowed to Trade again like certain people that have done this to growers a number of times but keep popping up again!
Jock the biggest problem is member apathy and a lot of members giving undirected votes to the Chair. From what I have witnessed GGL has done a reasonable job on the member Data base including removing deceased members. When the Reform Group was operating we had well over a 4000 members vote. For GGL to develop further into a huge benefit to the Grain Industry (Growers) we need members to look hard at the nominees for the Board and Cast a Directed vote!
I am focused on GM Wheat which will be for human consumption. Australia is a small player on a huge world market and we have major marketing Risk associated with the sales of our Clean green Wheat of high quality. Let the rest of the worlds largest growers adopt GM wheat before we risk our markets and price. The Senators have certainly not got all the facts and it is not their income that will suffer the ramifications of their uneducated decision making. Risking Australian wheat growers Income due to being misinformed is treacherous. Get the facts first and discuss it with real people FARMERS!
Readers I have been deeply involved in this Peak Grains Body dilemma for a long time and every time we got it almost across the finish line someone would come along and throw a spanner in the works.
It is all quite simple to fix, DAFF has a stringent criteria list that the RO holder is supposed to pass which includes things like the Financial stability to continue ( Without propping up from GRDC I would suggest) the ability to connect with Grower levy payers to set Policy etc. These plus other criteria would sort out just who in the Zoo would have the ability to best represent the Growers.
At the end of the day it is all about market acceptance for me. If we lose market share or price buy releasing GM wheat for example in Australia then there is no point growing it. It was clear from when the GM Wheat contamination occurred with US wheat that they were punished by those country's who don't want GM. If there is any risk to our markets from introducing GM human consumption food (Not oil or cotton) then we should not try and be the world leader into its adoption until we are guaranteed no loss whatsoever . We are a small player lets not fall into a trap we can not get out of!
LTF, all of the profit we used to receive is now going to the Trade and we are missing the bonus of the Industry good function and the economy of scale the SD provided.
The mega merchants are loving this windfall!
The closest thing we have in Australia like this is Grower owned CBH in WA who deliver for it's members. I dream of the day when we could have an East Coast grower Coop that could deliver markets and promote all of the grain we grow not just wheat. The East coast has been divided and conquered and it would be a real struggle to get enough determined growers together to further develop the Coop but it's far from impossible. Forget about US wheat associates and focus on a grower coop like CBH.
Perhaps it would be simpler to have in place that a contract can only be written that has a financier's guarantee. That would weed out the non payers. No contract could be written that was not backed up with the ability to paid. Shorter terms are also a great idea as we farmers are the only ones left that give credit terms of 30 days after the end of the week of delivery. We don't get that any more.
The loss of the Industry good functions where completely ignored by Tony Bourke and others even though we warned him the damage that will be done to our trade in Wheat if this was not addressed. Now we have no one in direct contact Except CBH that follow through to the end users like the AWB used to. The quality control, promotion, showing the end users how to extract the most value when milling the grain, blending quality control to mention a few have gone. Not to mention the growers being totally removed from the supply chain.
The loss of Golden rewards and freight discounts cost us dearly.

General

If Mr Cooper had shown interest in GGL and what they are working on he would find they are already working on many and more of the issues he has raised. It shows he is more concerned about adding strength to GPA through infiltrating the GGL Board room than what is good for GGL! GGL has a long presence set up to represent Growers not like the questionable set up and existence of GPA and who it represents!
This is the third article from the Land that Mr Cooper has been given to make comment. It's a shame the rest of the candidates were not given the same support.
When I was the Chair of NSWFarmers Grains committee acting on Policy I had talks with GGL about forming an East Coast Coop and the potential Elders may have in the process. Nothing secret or untoward here except for those who want some mileage out of such a conveniently timed story. If you want the truth you ask the right people!
The Union members of Graincorp I talked to were dead against the deal as it meant the loss of jobs through site closures and cost cutting. Well done to the Politicians that support Australian Rural communities because it's clear that labor and the Union bosses want us to import all of our food and export all of our jobs. Not to mention the money the armchair experts are making whilst the hard working Aussie including many Union members and farmers are struggling through years of labor neglect and bad decisions based on Political one up man ship and jobs for the boys.

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