GROWERS in NSW’s south-west slopes region will have access to a new grain storage facility, following the opening of GrainCorp’s Cunningar site in December.
The site, situated near Harden, has received an $8.1 million upgrade, jointly funded by GrainCorp. the NSW State Government, the local community and the local Hilltops Council.
GrainCorp is hopeful the co-funding model can be applied in other areas, saying the Cunningar initiative demonstrated the potential for win-win outcomes.
Nigel Lotz, general manager of operations for GrainCorp said the facility was a blueprint for future public-private co-investments.
“The Cunningar site project has set the benchmark of how public, private and growers can come together to deliver a fantastic outcome for the whole community,” Mr Lotz said.
He said GrainCorp had targeted the area, which is in a medium to high rainfall cropping zone, because of its scope for growth in terms of grain production.
“The broader Harden area is one of the most reliable cropping regions in Australia so having access to a modern, efficient supply chain is vital for growers to realise their potential,” he said.
Mr Lotz said the new infrastructure at Cunningar had led to one of the most grain receival sites in Australia, adding there had been record turnaround times recorded.
He said the local community would benefit from the focus on rail at the site.
“The more efficient site will move thousands of tonnes back to rail, removing 4,000 truck journeys from local roads reducing wear and tear and increasing safety for local communities.”
The Federal Member for Riverina and Small Business Minister Michael McCormack said the opening was the perfect example of the Government working hard with other levels of Government and corporations, as well as the local community, to achieve a positive outcome for all involved.
“These developments will reduce rail freight rates for the farming community, increasing the farm gate return to local growers and creating a more reliable and efficient grain facility,” Mr McCormack said.