MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA — AWB will make its first distribution April 13 to wheat growers participating in its 2010-11 season wheat pools. The gross amount will be A$145 million and after deduction of supply chain costs, the net payment to growers will be A$112 million (excl GST).

AWB General Manager Commodities Mitch Morison said the payments would equate to 24% to 28% of estimated pool equity, depending on individual grades.

“This first pool distribution also includes full value of early commitment premiums, which will add A$15 or A$10 a tonne to individual payments depending on when growers contracted their grain to our pools,” Morison said.

“Our estimated pool returns for all grades are currently holding steady and we are steadily selling and shipping wheat to various markets, including successfully pricing large volumes of feed wheat from eastern Australia.

“There are challenges in shipping from eastern Australia, with the flooding rain that caused so much wheat to be received in feed grades also having caused significant damage to rail infrastructure through Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria, thus forcing more grain to be moved via road transport. Ultimately this is adding to the costs of moving grain to port and although we are recovering as much of this added cost as possible through higher sales prices, it is important to note that in time the additional costs may affect final net pool returns.”