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Your weekly CBH Harvest Update - 14 November



Included in this update is information on last week's:

  • Receival statistics for each zone
  • Operations update
  • Zone summary's
  • Market update
  • CBH's Harvest Heroes

Operations Update

Several rainfall events slowed down the rate of harvest deliveries, with 1.8 million tonnes received throughout the week taking total deliveries to 3.8 million tonnes.

Chief Operations Officer Mick Daw said that the significant rainfall events on Monday night and Tuesday morning halted harvest for a couple of days. 

"It has been a frustrating start to the harvest period for both growers and our Operations team with the 3 to 4 rainfall events, however we managed to ramp up in the back half of last week with some sites staying open longer in the afternoon and over the weekend to capture as much as we could", said Mr Daw. 

"Some growers are still reporting yields higher than expected which is a fantastic result, however we do anticipate that this will place some pressure on some sites and services across the network".

"We are currently working through how we will manage that but we are encouraging those growers that can deliver direct to port to do so, and we are also keen to work with growers that have access to silo bags," said Mr Daw. 

Zone Summary

Albany Zone

  • The Albany zone experienced cooler weather and scattered minor rainfall events last week. Overall, the number of growers starting their harvesting program has been steadily increasing. Warmer weather over the weekend should see an increase in receival tonnes across the zone. To date, the zone has received 392,000 tonnes.
  • Canola and barley made up the majority of receivals, with a small amount of oats.
  • Grain quality has been good, with yields tracking on or above estimates.
  • Most sites in the zone are now open for receivals. The balance of sites will open towards the end of next week. Cycle times across the zone are good.

Esperance Zone

  • Last week, the Esperance zone received 414,000 tonnes, to bring the year to date total for the zone to 860,000 tonnes.
  • Canola and feed barley dominated receivals last week. The weather was a limiting factor with cooler days and some isolated showers holding growers up from delivering at full receival potential. Wheat receivals continue to increase through the zone, with most of the wheat deliveries at Grass Patch, Cascades, Salmon Gums and the port.
  • Grain quality is good overall, although the effects of frost events on barley quality are being seen by a few growers.
  • All sites are now open with community sample sheds likely to open early this week.

Geraldton Zone

  • The Geraldton Zone has had another frustrating week with the zone receiving from 10 to 50mm of rain. This drastically reduced receivals for a few days, and at the present time we are sitting on 1,210,000 tonnes received.
  • At this stage in most part canola deliveries are starting to slow down in the north with a number of growers starting on their wheat, but also due to the colder weather a lot of lupins as well.
  • We are yet to open Latham and Marchagee but both of these sites will open once we start to see demand.

Kwinana North Zone

  • The Kwinana North zone received significant rain early last week which slowed receivals for most of the zone. With the anticipated warmer weather this week, most growers should be back in full swing. To date, we have received 890,000 tonnes across the zone.
  • Mainly canola, barley and oats have been received so far, with small tonnages of lupins and wheat.
  • Grain quality across all commodities is still good. Yields are above expectations at this stage.
  • All sites in the zone are now open for receivals, with cycle times are consistently good across the zone. Some sites will start double shifts or extended hours next week.

Kwinana South Zone

  • The Kwinana South zone avoided most of the rain last week and growers were able to continue harvesting. We are anticipating the south off the zone will kick off this week following the hot weather over the weekend. The zone has currently received a total of 483,000 tonnes for the season with approximately 318,000 tonnes received in the last week.
  • Most of the grain received so far is canola and barley with small amounts of oats, lupins and wheat.
  • Canola and barley quality is still tracking well with yields continuing to slightly higher than expected.
  • Almost all sites in the zone are now open, with the remaining 1-2 to open this week. The Kwinana South cycle times have improved over the last week and it is anticipated this will continue to further decrease with sites being fully staffed.

Market Update

Canola markets locally were lower with GM canola off $100 per tonne as grower selling throughout the week saw majority of marketers purchase sufficient quantities to fill their early requirements. Internationally demand is focused on the first quarter of 2022 however once again with limited shipping capacity in this quarter most Australian marketers will not be able to participate until second quarter, where to date there is limited international buying interest. Non GM demand into Europe remains to be filled however buyers will be cautious to purchase into the second quarter as they wait to see the outlook of the local European crop.

Australian wheat demand started to focus on higher protein as rainfall in Eastern Australia raised possibility of quality concerns. In Kwinana the APW1 to ASW spread move out to $31 per tonne as the trade looks to cover APW requirements. Unfortunately, shipping capacity for the first quarter of 2022 is limited reducing the ability for the market and growers to facilitate all of this additional demand.


Feed barley prices softened throughout the week from $300 per tonne FIS Kwinana to the high $280’s per tonne FIS Kwinana. Current demand is from the Middle East with South East Asia quiet as end users utilise local corn stocks. The sporadic nature of Middle East demand will likely see price volatility in the short term.

Harvest Heroes

Each year, our existing CBH staff are joined by hundreds of harvest employees, and as a team they work together to receive the WA crop as safely and efficiently as possible. We want to highlight some of these harvest heroes who help make our grain supply chain the best in the world, and make harvest our favourite time of year.

This week, meet Cody Thomas, a Project Delivery team member whose work throughout the year was integral in the fabrication and delivery of ten Drive Over Grids (DOGs)/stackers in time for this harvest.  

Using his years of experience in equipment fabrication with CBH, Cody worked closely with our suppliers to make sure the DOGs produced were of a great quality and arrived on time for the start of harvest. This included solving stock supply issues experienced by the DOG manufacturers, by using his network of contacts to find alternative suppliers.

Once the DOGs were finished, Cody then worked closely with CBH Operations to organise the logistics and timing of their delivery. This ensured smooth site acceptance testing, commissioning and finally, handover to Operations, ready for the grain to start flowing.

As well as making sure the DOGs were ready on time, Cody also helped with the completion and commissioning of the Brookton site expansion and many other projects, often jumping in at short notice and venturing across the state to provide support to his team when needed.

This preparation work is crucial to making sure everything runs smoothly when the grain starts coming in at harvest, and Cody's contribution is outstanding. 

It’s people like Cody who make up our team of Harvest Heroes.

Cody Thomas on site with one of the newly commissioned Drive Over Grids.

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