ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA — Viterra released on Aug. 24 its storage and handling plan in preparation for harvest. The plan is a new initiative to provide growers with important operational information in one place.

In addition to the storage and handling service charges, the plan contains a range of information about the services Viterra is offering this harvest.

Dean McQueen, Viterra’s executive manager grains, said the plan consolidates the information for growers and makes it easier to access.

"We’re trying to provide useful harvest-related information to growers in a simple format and in a timely manner," he said.

The plan includes the storage and handling charge structure for the harvest as well as a range of other information including details about the Service Center, ezigrain, the Segregation Plan and a harvest recruitment update.

This is the earliest the company has released storage and handling service charges to the industry. Viterra has removed some fees in order to simplify the price structure, McQueen said.

"There have been minimal changes to base upcountry service fees for the major commodities, wheat and barley, which follows a zero increase in base fees last year," he said.

Carry, or storage, service charges have increased reflecting the higher cost of carrying grain between seasons, the quality risk of holding grain for long periods, the cost of maintaining effective storage and hygiene and the increased cost of managing warehoused grain since the advent of deregulation, McQueen said.

"The structure of our carry charges is also designed to drive efficient behavior as we want to encourage the movement of grain through the system to avoid unnecessary high carry-over stocks into the following season. Carry fees are a discretionary cost for grain marketers and the costs can be reduced by shipping in the earlier part of the season," he said.

Viterra has made more information available publicly available with respect to commodities managed through its grain network. The changes will enhance the operation of the shipping stem and increase the level of information available to the industry, Viterra said.

"Growers are now able to ‘opt in’ to have information on their warehoused grain disclosed to other grain marketers," McQueen said. "However we will continue to maintain the privacy of growers who choose not to disclose this information."