Harvest well underway on upper EP

Viterra's Brenton Bascombe and Nick Pratt tour the Rudall bunker site.
Viterra's Brenton Bascombe and Nick Pratt tour the Rudall bunker site.

The upper Eyre Peninsula is now a month into the 2019 harvest, with Viterra sites across the region beginning to receive grain in mid October.

As at November 10, 414,615 tonnes had been delivered to silos across the Western region, with 344,609 delivered since October 28.

Western region operations manager Nick Pratt said the bulk of receivals were still coming from the upper Eyre Peninsula heading into November.

"Sites in the upper Eyre Peninsula continue to receive the largest volume while our sites in the south are just getting started with some deliveries of canola and barley," he said.

Western region operations manager Nick Pratt and operations coordinator Brenton Bascombe at the new side sell outloader behind the Rudall silos.

Western region operations manager Nick Pratt and operations coordinator Brenton Bascombe at the new side sell outloader behind the Rudall silos.

The closure of the Eyre Peninsula railway earlier this year has prompted an investment into new infrastructure across major Eyre Peninsula receival sites to help facilitate additional truck movements between silos.

With a $6 million upgrade to facilities at Port Lincoln, Mr Pratt said investment into up-country sites "formed an important part of the smooth transition to road transport."

"Our Cummins and Lock sites underwent roadwork upgrades for trucks to safely and efficiently outturn," he said.

"We have a long term commitment to providing grain storage and handling services to Eyre Peninsula growers... and will continue to focus on investing in areas that give our customers the greatest value.

"This harvest, we've created efficiencies that we've been able to pass back to growers and made investments in the supply chain for the benefit of growers including reducing freight rates, dynamic binning for barley and the new Viterra app."

Western region operations coordinator Brenton Bascombe said trucks already played a role in transporting grain between Viterra sites before the rail closure.

He said new infrastructure at Rudall was aimed at providing a smooth transition to additional truck movements.

A side sell outloader has been installed for the 2019 harvest, allowing trucks to load grain directly from the Rudall silos without disrupting other activity at the site.