Agribusiness & Food

CBH invests record-setting $348M into network

The CBH Group has revealed its grain exports have increased during the COVID-19 affected months, in comparison to last year.

The CBH Group has invested a record $348 million during the 2022 financial year to improve logistical capacity and increase tonnes delivered to customers.

In the 12 months to the end of September 2022, CBH executed hundreds of projects which can be split into three major categories: expand and enhance, sustaining capital, and maintenance.

This record investment in the CBH network included $157 million for expanding and enhancing the network, including three major site expansions at Cadoux, Dumbleyung and Shark Lake, adding 300,000 tonnes of permanent storage to the network.

A further 2.4 million tonnes of temporary storage was added across 33 sites in the network for harvest 2021/22, which played a key role in receiving and storing last year’s harvest

$131 million was invested in more than 230 sustaining capital projects, which extends the life and functionality of its existing assets, including sealed storage remediation, port shutdowns, mobile weighbridges and increasing the height of open bulkhead walls.

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This included $17 million for addressing critical risks, focussing on improving safety for CBH employees and contractors by providing safer elevator access, machine guarding, horizontal access, grid cover replacements and fan cover drop zone projects.

$60 million was spent on scheduled maintenance, including preventative maintenance, installing condition monitoring equipment, fixing breakdowns and repairs.

CBH Chief Operations Officer Mick Daw said investment in the network is critical to grow, sustain and improve the co-operative’s infrastructure in order to lift logistical capacity, particularly from site to port.

“We’re currently projecting that the average crop size will grow to 22 million tonnes by 2033, and peak at around 28 million tonnes,” Daw said.

“In line with our strategy, we must invest more to be able to safely receive the crop and improve our assets and infrastructure to increase capacity safely and efficiently.

“Our goal is to be able to export 3 million tonnes per month by 2033 and to do that we need to commit to elevated levels of network investment.”

“This year’s record investment of $348 million and execution of hundreds of projects is a great achievement and is in line with the level of investment required in the years to come to handle the growing task.”

CBH Chief Project Delivery Officer Sam Gliddon said the CBH team has worked closely with contractors to ensure the builds are delivered safely and to the highest quality to ensure longevity and benefits to growers.

“Since 2018, we have added a total of 7.7 million tonnes of temporary and permanent storage and completed more than 400 sustaining projects,” Gliddon said.

“This is a significant investment to ensure our supply chain and network matches pace with the increasing crop size and evolving customer demands.

“I want to acknowledge and thank all of our contractors who we work closely with to execute these important projects for the CBH network, especially in the midst of COVID-19 outbreaks.

“Increasing the capacity of our network is critical to maximising the value of growers’ grain in international markets, and sustainably creating value for WA growers, both current and future.”

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