Monthly Newsletters

Chairman's Comment

With the harvesting in full swing, there are quite a lot of positives to take into account.

The weather has been reasonably kind with a welcome rainfall event, even if it had to wait until the harvest started. Some cool weather has helped to get the CCS to start rising, and now some fine weather to help us get the crop to the mill. On top of that, the sugar price has been heading upwards for a while now and hopefully it continues.

The final pay for the 2020 season went into grower’s accounts on 26 July and full details of the final price and pools are on page 3. 

Bundaberg Sugar put out a tranche recently and the 2022 season target price of $495 has been achieved already. There was not a lot of interest from growers and I suspect that this is due to the low announced allocation in the Burnett surface water scheme and groundwater system.

The mill seems to have settled down and while the road transport system for Bingera cane has been fair there have been a few issues. Because of the way cane is transported there have been more dry samples than is acceptable. On page 2 there is an explanation from Matt Curtis that outlines the situation and a potential fix.

For those ex Bingera growers please (where possible) consign cane in multiples of three (3) for each con note. Lost time to date is around 11.2 days made up of 6.5 wet weather days, one (1) day of scheduled stops and the balance mill downtime and other issues. By our estimate, the average hourly rate inclusive of wet weather is around 224 tonnes cane per hour and mill reliability is sitting at around 91%. This should see a 22 November finish if there are no major upsets.

The top five (5) issues we have been dealing with over the last month are:

1. Ensuring that the Cane Analysis Program is being implemented and that issues are being resolved promptly and as per the program.

2. Working with QSL and Bundaberg Sugar to potentially allow Bundaberg growers to access the QSL Direct pricing platform.

3. The next rates bill is hitting our mailboxes now and Mayor Jack Dempsey and his Councilors’ have, and still have, a choice around these rates rises on farmland. They didn’t have to apply them, and they can choose to reverse them. We will be continuing the fight against unfair rate increases on your behalf with the alliance of  AgForce, BFVG and CANEGROWERS Isis.

4. Helping growers with electricity tariff selection to optimise affordability.

5. Negotiating and administering the contract between growers and ORECO for the supply of cane trash.

If you ever need to contact me please call on 0414 593 105.

To read the July edition, click here.

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