Freight Rail

Harvest begins on Eyre Peninsula

Grain. Photo: Shutterstock

South Australian agribusiness Viterra received its first Eyre Peninsula load for the 2017/18 harvest into its Poochera receival site on October 10.

The company’s western region operations manager, James Murray, said crops on western Eyre Peninsula were ahead of other areas.

“The weekend rain has helped push crops out a little longer, but we expect receivals to get underway now on western EP subject to the weather,” he said.

“Importantly, our sites are ready to go when growers are able to start. We’re well prepared to handle a range of quality characteristics and have the ability to be flexible with grades and segregations as harvest progresses.

“We aim to help growers capture as much value from their grain as possible while meeting buyers’ needs at the same time, and encourage growers to provide feedback at any stage during harvest.”

Viterra says it has worked closely with a number of visiting grain buying delegations this year to make South Australia their origin of choice.

“Here on the EP we hosted a delegation from United Arab Emirates and they were impressed by the farming practices and the quality control and food safety within our supply chain,” Murray continued.

“This year we have a new declaration process for growers at receival which helps to meet increasingly tighter requirements from export markets, critically important in an export region like the Eyre Peninsula.”

Viterra is still moving the record 2016/17 crop out of the Eyre Peninsula, with over 3 million tonnes exported between October 2016 and September 2017.

“Viterra has shipped 3.09 million tonnes of grain from the Eyre Peninsula since October last year, which is the second-largest total on record,” Murray said.

“This has been remarkable effort by our employees and transport partners, achieved with exceptionally low vessel wait times.

“New season shipping is expected to start about mid-November, with nine different exporters committed to exporting from the Eyre Peninsula in 2017/18.”