Bumper harvest requires supply chain diligence: ANZ

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Australia’s agricultural supply chain will need to have its harvest plans in place as the country prepares for what could be its second largest grain crop ever, ANZ’s Agri Commodity report suggests.

ANZ says the near-record harvest will require planning and proactivity by all in the supply chain

All throughout this year analysts have predicted Australian farms will generate record crop production this year, but ANZ warns all parties to the supply chain will have to be proactive to make the most of it.

ANZ Head of Agribusiness Mark Bennet says the great forecasts for all major crops are positive but could prove to be a headache further along the supply chain. 

"The Australian grain supply chain is world-leading in efficiency, all the way through from the farm, to transportation, to storage, to processing, and shipping for export," Bennett says.

"Last year’s record crop demonstrated that coping with the massive volume of grains and oilseeds can be a challenge, albeit a good one, and this year’s harvest will have the added factor of border disruptions.

Bennett suggests that to maximise on the size and quality of the crops, harvesting could occur at the most opportune times, even if that means seeing headers in the paddocks in Christmas Day if conditions are optional in southern growing regions.

It will be not only farmers, but other stakeholders in the supply chains, who will need to confirm and check their plans for the sheer scale of required harvesters and trucks, as well as the personnel, to harvest the crops.

Elsewhere, grain receival sites will also need to plan for the volume of crops with the required personnel and infrastructure in place fit to accommodate separate inflows of wheat, canola and barley among others. 

Another trend which could impact the harvest this year is the growth of storage located on farms, which has risen across the past few years with farmers opting to retain grain for feed or future sale as well as the decline in the price of storage infrastructure.

"For this harvest, given the ongoing strong demand for exports, combined with the rapid growth of the domestic feedlot sector to meet the demand for red meat, it is foreseeable that much larger volumes of grain will be transported directly to their end destination than in the past, including from west to east."

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