The Great Grain Shed Revival?

Key Points
  • Grain receival sites filling to capacity in many areas due to record harvest
  • A huge increase in the level of on farm storage capacity in the last decade
  • Grain sheds provide an excellent bulk storage option with much larger capacity for storage than individual silos or grain bags

The 2020/2021 harvest has now solidified itself as a true bin buster for many parts of the east coast, and will no doubt be reflected on for many years to come.

With receival records tumbling across the supply chain on an almost daily basis through the peak of harvest, we once again saw just how efficient the Aussie grower is in ripping off a huge crop.

This harvest pace, coupled with exceptional yields in most growing regions through the east coast, saw grain receival sites filling to capacity in many areas, as well as grower on farm storage bursting at the seams.

 

 

The landscape is currently littered with grain bags, and no doubt every silo you see scattered around the country is full to the brim.

All in all, a great result for the grower and a solid advocation for the efficiency of the supply chain.

However, as happens often in big years, the topic of on farm storage floats to the surface, with one surprising dynamic this year.

The grain receival sites filling to capacity in many areas has seemingly found a renewed vigour.

There is no doubt we have seen a huge increase in the level of on farm storage capacity in the last decade, with silo storage being the preferred option for most growers, and more recently grain bags have captured a large portion of the market. But what of the long-forgotten grain shed?

As with all storage options there are pro’s and cons and certainly no “one size fits all approach” but with increased interest in grain sheds as a versatile, long term and cost-effective method of bulk grain storage, it is worth considering in your analysis.

 

Some of the upsides of having a grain shed as part of your on-farm storage setup include:

Capacity: Grain sheds provide an excellent bulk storage option with much larger capacity for storage than individual silos or grain bags.

Efficiency: Given the speed at which crops can be harvested these days, grain sheds can provide a more efficient option than bags and silo’s in keeping up to harvest pace.

Customisation: A grain shed can be built to your individual size, access and operational requirements.

Versatility: When silos are empty, they add little value operationally. Grain sheds can provide alternative storage options for things like machinery and fertilizer and can be used for a variety of other operational value adds.

Cost: When broken down to a $per tone cost over time, grain sheds provide an excellent return on investment.

 

Capital Cost Comparison – On Farm Storage

 

Silos

Grain Bag

Grain Shed

Fixed Cost

$20,000

$ 60,000.00

 $ 220,000.00

Capacity (mt)

100

1000

 3000

Est Usable Life

25

15

25 

$ per mt cost

$8

$4

$2.93 

*Chart does not account for variable or operational costs, or the value add of alternative storage options or utilisation of a shed.

 

Grain sheds have, over time, fallen out of consideration as a long-term bulk storage option for many growers, however on analysis, it proves to be a very cost effective and versatile option when considering your storage setup, and given the significant increase in interest recently – it would appear many growers are starting to agree.

After all, as a grower who is an advocate of grain sheds said this week: “I’ve never seen a spray rig parked in a silo.”

The Wheelhouse Group’s Wes Wheelhouse in front of his 3000 tonne fertiliser shed in Bridgewater

 

Related Articles

De risking your production with storage

Storage of Agricultural produce – an economic and common-sense argument

 

Share This Post:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  • 2
  • 1
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
    3
    Shares