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Drought-Stricken Australia Importing More Grain
USAgNet - 10/15/2018

Australia's biggest east coast grain export terminals have had to completely reverse their supply chain and are instead ramping up domestic imports as the impact of the drought continues to spread. Grain from the western states have been shipped into the ports of Brisbane and Newcastle since August to meet a shortage of feed in northern New South Wales and Queensland.

But in a sign conditions are worsening across southern NSW and Victoria, imports have now begun at Port Kembla south of Sydney for the first time in more than a decade.

The grain is shipped, rather than moved by rail, across to eastern Australia because it is much more economic and efficient.

Three shipments carrying a total of about 100,000 tonnes of grain have now arrived at Port Kembla, and will supply large mills and stockfeed producers.

Dene Ladmore from Quattro Ports, which began operating an export terminal at Port Kembla in 2016, said making the switch from exporting to importing grain was a huge logistical exercise.

GrainCorp, which also runs an export terminal at Port Kembla, has also begun reversing its supply chain and has just received its first shipment.

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