WEST PERTH, AUSTRALIA — The CBH Group has completed 80,000 tonnes of new storage at its Chadwick receival site near Esperance after the completion of the more than A$16 million network investment.

The upgrade includes four closed circular cells, each with capacity to hold 20,000 tonnes of grain, which takes total capacity at Chadwick to 655,000 tonnes for the 2019-20 harvest. This makes it one of the co-operative’s largest receival sites, the company said.

Throughput enhancements including elevators and inloading conveyors also have been installed as part of the upgrade. The new cells have combined inloading capacity of 1,000 tonnes per hour.

The expansion is part of CBH’s ongoing investment in the network that focuses maintenance and capital investment on the core 100 sites that already receive more than 95% of the annual crop.

CBH said Chadwick has been identified as one of the core 100 sites as grain production in the Esperance region continues to grow.

Within the past decade, the five-year rolling average of receivals within the Esperance Zone has risen by almost 1 million tonnes, from 1.62 million tonnes in 2005-09 to 2.54 million tonnes in 2015-19. This translates to a compounded annual growth rate of 4.5%.

In the 2018-19 harvest, CBH completed its second largest harvest on record with 16.4 million tonnes of grain received across its network. CBH said 2.4 million tonnes of the grain received during the 2018-19 season were at CBH sites within the Esperance  zone.