GrainCorp unveiled its upgraded sites at Barellan and Quandialla on Thursday. The upgrade is part of GrainCorp’s Building a Better Network program. Combined, the two sites have received roughly $14.5 million of investment.
According to GrainCorp General Manager of Operations Nigel Lotz, the upgrades have been planned in conjunction with the State Government, through their Fixing Country Rail program.
“These are some of the most reliable grain growing regions in the country and we are excited to be revealing these two new sites ahead of harvest.”
“We are committed to investing in our network and delivering the best experience for our growers. These efficiency gains will deliver at least a $5 tonne saving in freight costs and open growers to new international opportunities. We have used regional contractors and local subcontractors to complete the works, supporting local industry,” Mr Lotz said.
The State Government is investing $400 million to providing targeted infrastructure funding through Restart NSW for regional freight rail projects. $1.5 million was invested around Barellan, providing eight sidings and two loops.
Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said the almost $1.5 million Fixing Country Rail investment to increase the length of the Barellan siding by 522 metres led to GrainCorp investing in new equipment that can increase grain loading to over 1000 tonnes per hour.
“The new equipment can load a 40-wagon train in under three hours at 1,000 tonnes per hour. Two trains have already been successfully loaded,” she said.
Recent figures show there is about 3.9 million tonnes of grain produced in the Riverina. Freight is worth $66 billion to the NSW economy, and the NSW Government is committed to improving freight connectivity along key routes.
The Riverina grain industry exports 74 per cent of its production, mainly wheat, barley and canola. Fixing Country Rail provides targeted infrastructure funding from Restart NSW for projects which improve freight connectivity on the regional rail network.
To date the NSW Government has invested $153 million in 23 projects, including funding to 13 projects in Round 1 with an additional $15 million of Transport for NSW funding for a further 10 projects.