WEST PERTH, AUSTRALIA — A truckload of wheat delivered to CBH Group’s Pingrup receival site in the Albany zone late Feb. 14 has pushed total grain receivals in Western Australia (WA) past 15 million tonnes for the first time in history, CBH said.
The delivery consolidates the 2011-12 harvest as the biggest crop ever produced in WA. A month ago, harvest receivals surpassed the previous record set in 2003-04 of 14,695,321 million tonnes.
CBH Group General Manager Operations Colin Tutt said reaching the 15 million tonne milestone was a fantastic achievement for everyone involved with the 2011-12 harvest which has been incredibly challenging.
“Our pre-harvest state forecast of 13.5 million tonnes has been well and truly broken and we will reflect on this year as one full of challenges, hard work and exceptional yields,” Tutt said.
Tutt said the challenging times will continue over coming months as the task to move the big crop to port ramps up and, as a grower co-operative, CBH was determined to make sure it happened.
“The large freight task we are currently facing demonstrates the importance of efficient rail transport,” he said. “Last week the first shipment of 50 standard gauge aluminum wagons arrived into the Port of Fremantle marking one of the most tangible steps yet in growers owning their own fleet of rolling stock.”
Last year the CBH Group contracted Bradken to build 574 rail wagons, 446 narrow gauge and 128 standard gauge as part of a A$175 million commitment to above rail rolling stock.
Tutt said the 2011-12 harvest is expected to continue in some areas until the final weeks of February, with around another 75,000 tonnes expected to be delivered.