December 19, 2012
NSW Farmers strenuously opposes the GTA’s proposed increase in the wheat test weight standard. The GTA proposal seeks to increase the test weight of milling grades of wheat from 74 to 76 kg per hectolitre (100 litres). NSW Famers’ Grain Committee Chair, Mark Hoskinson, has criticised the proposal for its failure to adequately consider the impact on farm gate revenues. ‘We understand that the change would see the number of wheat deliveries in NSW rejected from higher milling grades due to failing test weights rise by up to 8 percent. This would see farmers lose as much as $50 per tonne on prices paid today’ said Mr Hoskinson. No bulk cargo from the eastern states has failed to meet international standards for test weight. “Grain Trade Australia has failed to acknowledge that where 76kg/hL is the standard overseas, the standard is based on a cleaned sample of wheat whereas the Australian 74kg/hl standard is as taken as a raw sample,” Mr Hoskinson said. “NSW Farmers has had representation on the GTA Standards Technical Committee over recent years and has successfully delayed the implementation of the proposed increase to the test weight. NSW Farmers has proposed to GTA that wheat test weight standards should be set by an independent committee with equitable representation from all sectors of the industry. Any change to standard must clearly take into account wheat industry and on-farm impacts,” he said.