|Founded||5 April 1933|
|Andrew Crane (CEO)
Neil Wandel (Chairman)
|Products||Grain marketing, logistics|
|Revenue||$3.72 billion (September 2015)|
|Profit||$82.7 million (September 2015)|
Number of employees
|1,200 (September 2015)|
The CBH Group (commonly known as CBH, an acronym for Co-operative Bulk Handling), is a grain growers' cooperative that handles, markets and processes grain from the wheatbelt of Western Australia. CBH has a permanent staff of around 1,200 and annual revenue of $3.72 billion.
CBH was formed on 5 April 1933, at a time when a royal commission on bulk handling of grain was in progress, and after over 20 years of failed proposals for bulk handling of grain in Western Australia.
The trustees of the Wheat Board of Western Australia and Wesfarmers registered the company together with capital of £100,000 divided evenly into 100,000 shares. The cooperative was formed under the principle of one person, one vote, regardless of the amount of grain supplied.
In 2016 the Australian Taxation Office revealed that despite generating more than $3.4 billion in revenue in 2013-14, the company had paid no tax. This made it Australia's biggest revenue earner not to pay tax in the period under review.
During the early years most grain movement was by rail over the Western Australian Government Railways network, with sidings and branch lines specifically serving wheat growing areas. Many of the branch lines and rail facilities have not been updated or maintained, with road transport increasing in many areas.
In 2009, CBH decided to put its rail grain haulage services out to tender for the first time. It aimed that the amount of grain transported by rail rise from 50% to 70%. CBH settled on a business model that saw it invest in new locomotives and grain wagons, with day-to-day operations contracted out.
In December 2010, CBH awarded Watco WA Rail a ten-year contract to operate services in the south of Western Australia. To operate the services, CBH purchased 22 CBH class locomotives from MotivePower, Boise and 574 grain wagons from Bradken, Xuzhou.
Under the agreement, Watco is responsible for providing a comprehensive rail logistics planning service, including train planning and scheduling, tracking, maintenance, inventory control and crew management. Watco operates and maintains the rolling stock, with ownership remaining with CBH.
The services link various CBH grain collection points in the wheatbelt with CBH terminal and port facilities in Albany, Geraldton and Kwinana. CBH operate on the Brookfield Rail managed open access network.
Although the contract officially commenced on 1 May 2012, Watco operated its first service on 30 March 2012. Because of a delay in the delivery of the rolling stock, QR National continued to operate some 3 ft 6 in (1,067 mm) gauge services until October 2012, while to operate standard gauge services, locomotives were hired from Chicago Freight Car Leasing Australia and SCT Logistics. A further three locomotives will be delivered in 2015 as compensation for late delivery of the original order.
In 1999/2000 season CBH received a record amount of grain, 12.2 million tonnes in all, made up of 11 different grain types.
CBH received a new record harvest of 14.7 million tonnes from grain growers in Western Australia during the 2003/2004 season. This record was broken in 2013/14, with 15.8 million tonnes of grain handled by January 2014.
New records were set in the 2016/2017 season when the company received 16.6 million tonnes of grain. The company expected over A$5 billion to have been pumped into the Western Australian economy as a result of the record harvest. A new record for the month of December was set with 831,000 tonnes of grain moved to port via rail. The highest monthly shipping record was also broken in January with 1.88 million tonnes shipped out. The previous monthly shipping record of 1.66 million tonnes had been set in February 2014.
See also CBH grain receival points
Historically the CBH system had up to 300 receival points – in most cases tied into the Western Australian Government Railways railway network, as the railway lines were the prime grain transport method.
Each zone is further broken down into areas.
- Annual Report 30 September 2015 CBH Group
- "Key Facts & Figures". CBH Group. Retrieved 2012-04-12.
- Western Australia. Royal Commission on the Bulk Handling of Wheat; Angwin, W. C. (William Charles) (1935), Report, Govt. Printer, retrieved 5 March 2014
- Western Australia. Royal Commission on the Bulk Handling of Wheat; Angwin, W. C. (William Charles), 1863–1944; Mitchell, James Sir, 1866–1951 (1935), The Bulk Handling of Wheat Royal Commission : report to His Excellency Sir James Mitchell, Govt. Printer, retrieved 5 March 2014
- "THE COMMISSION'S REPORT.". The West Australian. Perth: National Library of Australia. 16 August 1935. p. 25. Retrieved 5 March 2014.
- Western Australia was by no means unique – there had been Royal Commissions into Bulk Handling of grain in other states – Victoria in 1902 for example Victoria. Royal Commission of Victoria (1902), Report of the Royal Commission on handling grain and other produce in bulk or otherwise, together with the appendices and minutes of evidence, Robert S. Brain, Government. Printer, retrieved 5 March 2014
- "Co-operative Bulk Handling Website- History". 2008. Archived from the original on 29 April 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-23.
- See also the history of Western Australian Farmers Federation that shows the relationship between the WAFF, CBH and Wesfarmers
- "ABC News Online – Farmers' group welcomes merger legislation". 2002. Retrieved 2008-08-04.
- "98 private companies earning over $200m pay no tax: ATO". ABC News. Retrieved 2016-04-04.
- Bidding underway for WA grain rail management Rail Express 11 November 2009
- Tender plans for rail future ABC News 18 November 2009
- Asciano in $700m grain bid The Australian 30 August 2010
- Locomotives roll off production line and wagons hit the WA shore CBH Group March 2012
- Major new investment in WA grains industry Agriculture & Food Minister 24 August 2012
- Watco wins CBH Group rail contract Perth Now 13 December 2010
- US group wins CBH contract from QR National The Australian 14 December 2010
- Watco wins CBH grain rail contract Rail Express 15 December 2010
- Clark, Peter (2012). An Australian Locomotive Guide. Rosenberg Publishing. p. 312. ISBN 9781921719554.
- New wagons hit the Western Australian shore CBH Group 9 February 2012
- WA grain industry takes ownership of first rail fleet Rail Express 29 August 2012
- CBH, Watco mark anniversary of moving grain on rail World Grain 3 April 2013
- Receival Site Map CBH Group
- ERA to mediate CBH, Brookfield rail talks Business News Western Australia 31 October 2013
- CBH, Watco rail agreement starts early World Grain 2 April 2012
- CBH grain wagons go to work early Farm Weekly 5 April 2012
- First train runs from Merredin Merredin-Wheatbelt Mercury 12 April 2012
- Annual Report June 2013 Aurizon
- Annual Report September 2012 CBH Group
- CBH pushes market limits The West Australian 23 December 2013
- CBH, Brookfield off to ERA Rail Express 6 November 2013
- Consultation Brookfield Rail Pty Ltd Floor and Ceiling Cost Determination Economic Regulation Authority 6 January 2014
- "LANSA – CBH uses LANSA to collect harvest estimates from 10,000 growers". 2008. Retrieved 2008-05-29.
- "ABC Rural – Sparks fly at Co-operative Bulk Handling AGM". 2005. Retrieved 2008-08-03.
- Grain growers CBH back to best after record WA harvest The Australian 23 January 2014
- Western Australian bulk handler and the nation's biggest grain exporter CBH Group posts a near record Profit The Weekly Times 3 February 2014
- Jenne Brammer (3 February 2017). "WA farmers deliver record grain harvest". Albany Advertiser. Yahoo7. Retrieved 4 February 2017.
- In 1965 the maximum was reached of 305 sites, page 236 – Goldfinch, Richenda; Co-operative Bulk Handling Limited (2003), Legends of the grain game : stories of the people who built Co-operative Bulk Handling, Co-operative Bulk Handling, ISBN 978-0-9592858-1-9
- "Our Locations". CBH Group. Retrieved 2013-04-12.
- Ayris, Cyril; Cooperative Bulk Handling Ltd (1999), A Heritage ingrained : a history of Co-operative Bulk Handling Ltd. 1933–2000, Co-operative Bulk Handling Ltd, ISBN 978-0-646-38283-8
- Co-operative Bulk Handling Limited (1965), A co-operative enterprise (New ed.), Co-operative Bulk Handling Limited
- Zekulich, Michael (1997). The Grain Journey: The History of the Grain Pool of W.A. Perth: Grain Pool of Western Australia. ISBN 0646327372.