WEST PERTH, AUSTRALIA — A year after the CBH Group rolled out Quality Optimisation to wheat growers in Western Australia the innovative tool has been recognized by the Australian Institute of Project Management (AIPM) as WA Project of the Year, CBH said on Aug. 21.

The Quality Optimisation project won first place in the Agricultural Projects category and the Best Overall project.

Quality Optimisation now goes forward into the national awards to be announced at the national AIPM conference in Melbourne later this year.

One of the judges commented the principal of returning value to our growers was quite evident in the CBH Group submission and was a clear outcome of the project.

CBH Group General Manager Operations Colin Tutt said the award was a fantastic achievement for CBH Group, the Quality Optimisation team and the growers of WA.

"The Quality Optimisation system was rolled out across all zones in 2011-12 providing growers with the ability to maximize the value of their wheat without having to blend on-farm," he said. "The system allowed growers to bring the harvest in more quickly with less equipment and less man power.

"We believe the conservative benefit of Quality Optimisation for that season from grade uplifts equates to at least A$4 per tonne for growers across the wheat crop.

"The QO project was a fine example of how to bring very diverse groups of people from across our business together with a clear common goal. The management of the project crossed divides and engaged with all levels of our business to get the job done effectively."

Nearly 2,700 growers took up Quality Optimisation during its first year with 4.6 million tonnes of wheat going through the post-delivery online optimization process by the January cut-off dates.

Of that, almost 2 million tonnes were able to shift grade.

Tutt said the outcome of the tool in its inaugural year and the recognition by AIPM was a very promising start for one of the most significant developments for grain growers in recent years.