Grain co-operative CBH returned a record rebate to its growers in the 2016/17 harvest, on its way to a record surplus in the 12-month stretch, the company said on January 15.
Among the records outlined in CBH’s annual report for the 2016/17 harvest – the 12 months ending September 30, 2017 – were a record 16.6 million tonnes of grain delivered to storage and handling facilities, a record $156.3 million rebate ($12.75 a tonne), and a record surplus before rebates of $247.6 million.
“Our co-operative had a strong 2016/17 financial year that culminated in the return of a record rebate to growers,” CBH chief executive Jimmy Wilson said.
“Our Operations and Marketing and Trading divisions as well as our investments performed well, with each returning a rebate to growers in the face of an international grain environment that continues to provide challenges.”
CBH’s net profit after tax was $91.3 million, up 83% year-on-year. Overall revenue increased 6.3% to $3.5 billion, driven by the larger number of tonnes traded, but partially offset by lower grain prices.
The co-op’s Operations division reported a pre-rebate surplus of $197.6 million, while Marketing and Trading reported a $58.3 million surplus before rebates.
“In the past four years Western Australian growers have delivered above average crops, with crop production growing faster than initially modelled in certain areas,” Wilson said.
“While managing such a large amount of grain can create challenges, CBH has responded by building additional storage and catering for unexpected events such as flooding and frost.
“Marketing and Trading continue to maintain market share despite the intense competition from the Black Sea region that resulted in high global grain stocks and historically low prices,” he reflected.
“Grain processing investments recorded an improvement in profitability, with our oats processing business Blue Lake Milling performing strongly, and profits from our Interflour flour milling joint venture reinvested for growth projects including the US$70 million Intermalt facility in Vietnam.”