WA’s grain harvest is more than a third of the way through, with 5.9 million tonnes tipped into CBH Group bins ahead of spring rainfall that this week forced some farmers to pull up stumps. CBH Group’s latest weekly harvest report, released on November 13, revealed a jump in deliveries of more than 2Mt in the week prior – just before falls of between 10mm and 40mm in the Wheatbelt. The State’s grain farmers are expected to pull in about 14.95Mt of crop this harvest, in line with historical averages, but well down on last year’s record 26Mt. More than 1Mt of grain has been delivered into the CBH network across five of its six zones during harvest so far, including Geraldton, Kwinana South, Kwinana North and Esperance. Farmers in the Albany Port Zone are sitting at 894,000 tonnes as their harvest efforts finally ramp up, while the pace of harvest is drawing to a close for farmers in the Geraldton Port Zone. Just 298,000t of grain was delivered in the Geraldton area between November 6 and 13. Meanwhile, between 440,000t and 500,000t was tipped into bins in the Geraldton, Kwinana North and South and Esperance zones during that same period. CBH chief operations officer Mick Daw said farmers were “well and truly in the thick of harvest”, with deliveries still strong in the other four zones. “This is evident in the high volume of grain we are receiving across all zones,” he said. “Pleasingly, our average cycle times in each zone are low, allowing growers to safely and quickly drop their grain off and get back to harvesting.” Mingenew farmer Geoff Cosgrove was about 60 per cent of the way through his harvest this week, after rolling the header out of the shed to start with canola about a month ago. He expects to finish up in the first week of December, after making a dent in his wheat program already and plans to finish with the second half of his lupin crop in the coming days. “We are feeling lucky to have a harvest up here… you don’t have to go much further north or south and there are farmers that are already finished,” he said. “Even areas just north of Mingenew have been quite average… we had a poor growing season.” Jerramungup farmer Bill Bailey was bracing for rain this week with forecast showers expected in the lower Great Southern just a few days after he started harvesting canola. “We spent some time waiting for the canola to ripen, so we moved on to barley in the meantime,” he said. “Now we have too much moisture to harvest... so we are just taking a break.” After notching up 210mm of rainfall this year, Mr Bailey said he felt fortunate most of that came during the growing season. “We really needed 30mm in September and we would have had quite a reasonable crop,” he said. “Some patches are exceptional and some are disappointing across the farm. “But overall it will be about average to below average.” Newdegate farmer Rochelle Walker said harvest was “ticking along” in her area, but farmers were discovering more frost than expected. “We started two weeks ago, and have four weeks to go... but it depends on what happens with the weather,” she said. “It’s about average... we are happy with where it is given the season. “There is more frost around than what we expected... but we are all still very grateful considering what others are dealing with.” Mr Daw said CBH would continue to keep growers updated through its CDF app. The Grain Industry Association of WA slashed its harvest prediction for WA by 550,000 tonnes in October, amid unseasonably hot conditions and a lack of spring rain. The figure was 3 per cent down on the September forecast of 15.5Mt and nearly 43 per cent lower than last year’s record 26Mt yield, which pumped $10 billion into the State’s economy. GIWA plans to release its next crop reports on November 17 and December 15, with the 2023-24 summary available on February 9.