THE ability to avoid double handling is one of the big benefits of a new port at Lucky Bay, according to Mangalo cropper Isaac Gill.
Mr Gill said the news that the site would be operational by this harvest was “fantastic”.
“I think it’s going to be of great benefit for all farmers on Eyre Peninsula – it doesn’t matter if they’re going to deliver to it or not,” he said. “For us, we’re going to be able to deliver to a port at harvest time for the first time. We won’t incur as many costs and those costs are profit.”
He said he had previously only been able to deliver grain to Tumby Bay during harvest, with it then delivered to Port Lincoln during the year.
Mr Gill estimates the freight and storage savings would be upwards of a “significant” $15 a tonne, while the promise of an extra $3/t in shares was an “added bonus”.
T-Ports estimates growers using the new port could save from $5/t to $20/t in freight costs.
The Gills grow wheat, barley, canola and lupins, with the potential for the port to expand into new commodities positive.
Wudinna grower Jeff Bigg said the distance from his farm to Lucky Bay and Port Lincoln was similar but he was hopeful the extra competition would bring down costs for everyone.
“I think the more we get behind (the port), the more we’ll get out of it,” he said.
He said it was a “relief” to see the project reach this stage after years of rumours about new ports.