The 2019/20 harvest on the Eyre Peninsula is officially underway, with Viterra’s Tumby Bay, Thevenard and Kimba sites receiving their first loads on Friday followed by Wudinna and Buckleboo on Monday.
Buckleboo grower Tristan Baldock kicked off the region’s harvest with the Eyre Peninsula’s first delivery on behalf of Karinya Ag into Viterra’s Tumby Bay site, ahead of also delivering Kimba’s first receival – a load of Spartacus barley.
Tristan says it’s good that harvest is underway and expects to see a few more growers start up next week.
“I’m hopeful by the weekend we can start reaping peas and lentils and sometime next week plan to get started on the wheat,” Tristan says.
“Buckleboo is our main delivery site but with below average yields this year we have the time to deliver further down the line so we’ll likely utilise Rudall, Kimba, Arno Bay and Tumby Bay as it works out better for us if we cart the grain further.”
Viterra’s Wudinna site also received its first load this week, a delivery of Spartacus barley from grower Jeff Bigg.
Jeff says he is growing barley, wheat and peas at his Wudinna property with wheat a couple of weeks away.
“The first delivery into Viterra’s site went smoothly and I’m pleased with the quality of the first couple of barley loads, they had good test weight and low screenings,” Jeff says.
Viterra Operations Manager, Western region Nick Pratt says he expects to see deliveries ramp up later this week and next week following some warmer weather.
“Importantly, all of our sites on the Eyre Peninsula are well prepared and ready to go when growers start harvesting,” Nick says.
Viterra Operations Manager Michael Hill says in the lead up to harvest, the business has been working closely with growers to understand their needs to ensure a service is being provided that is both valuable and efficient.
“That includes making significant investments in our supply chain with around $40 million directed each year to where we can provide the greatest value to growers during the harvest period.”
Michael says the business is continuously looking for ways to pass efficiencies back to growers.
“This harvest we have added barley dynamic binning following feedback from growers and the success of wheat dynamic binning last year which delivered approximately $6 million in value to growers,” Michael says.
“Importantly, dynamic binning provides growers with the potential to access a higher grade for loads that are just outside of receival standards.
“Less than a week into harvest, a mid-north grower had the first load of barley upgraded which boosted the price of his grain – something we are looking forward to seeing replicated around the state as harvest moves into full swing.
“We have also gained efficiencies in grain transportation and passed these on to growers through our Export Select rates which at most of our major sites have decreased, or stayed the same compared to the 2018/19 rates.
“Our main focus is to operate an efficient, cost effective and sustainable supply chain, and we will work with growers during the harvest to continue doing so.”