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New market for Western Australian barley

The CBH Group has exported its first malt barley shipment to a new international destination and existing strong relationships re-open major barley markets for Western Australian growers.

On Sunday 17 January 2021, CBH’s Marketing and Trading division shipped 35,000 tonnes of malting barley, accredited through the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC), from the Albany Grain Terminal to Mexico.

It's believed the export is the first ever malt barley shipment from Australia to Mexico.

CBH Chief Marketing and Trading Officer Jason Craig said following changes in the international trading landscape, efforts to develop new markets for Western Australian barley are proving successful.

“Our strong relationships have allowed us to find new destinations for Western Australian barley,” Mr Craig said.

“While it is early days, this shipment to Mexico signals a potential new market for malting barley however this will need to be developed over time.”

Meantime, Mr Craig said demand for Australian feed barley from Saudi Arabia is set to increase from almost nothing in the 2019/20 marketing year to more than two million tonnes this year.

“Saudi is re-opening as an export destination for Australian feed barley, which has become very price competitive compared to barley from alternative origins, such as Russia and the Ukraine that have dominated exports to the country for the past few years,” Mr Craig said.

Saudi Arabia is the second largest barley importer in the world, importing approximately 7 million tonnes each year.

Meantime, due to the relative value of feed barley compared to alternative feed grains, Australian feed barley exports to Thailand and Vietnam are forecast to double in 2020/21, up from around 700,000 tonnes and 190,000 tonnes* respectively.

“Western Australian growers have delivered a remarkable 2020/21 crop, resulting in the production of more than four million tonnes of barley,” Mr Craig said.

“As Australia’s largest barley exporter, it is the priority for our Marketing and Trading team to find new markets for this grain by taking advantage of trade conditions, developing new customer relationships and exploring opportunities in new markets.”

*National export data sourced from Australian Bureau of Statistics.