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CLICK HERE for printer friendly version of July's newsletter
At the conclusion of Week 3 of the 2020 harvest, Proserpine Mill has crushed 193,000 tonnes of the estimated 1.62MT crop (just over 12%). At this early stage, the mill average CCS is sitting on 12.69 which is slightly higher than expectation. Since commencement, weekly throughput has been below budget mainly due to the delayed start and prevailing wet conditions. As a result, average bin weights have been affected and the average so far this season is 9.22 tonnes. The factory is beginning to settle into a routine with crush rates around 610 tonnes p/hour.
The Operations Review Committee is due to meet with Wilmar in Week 4 at which time we will review harvesting equity and logistical performance as well as CCS trend.  
Molasses Gain Sharing Payment
As you may now be aware the Molasses Gain Sharing Payment for growers has been paid by the mill to growers this week at 26.62 cents per tonne.  This is one of the many benefits that CANEGROWERS have negotiated for its members.
CANEGROWERS Policy Council
The CANEGROWERS Policy Council will meet on 21 and 22 July to consider the many issues that need to be managed over the months ahead including the State election strategy, industry viability and sustainability, reef, and trade policy. If you would like to discuss these important issues with any of the CANEGROWERS Proserpine board or myself, please contact us.

Senate Hearings on Science informing Reef Regulation
CANEGROWERS Proserpine will represent growers at public hearings this month as part of the inquiry into the science behind the Reef regulations. The Senate committee conducting the inquiry has rescheduled hearings for 27-28 July in Brisbane, after regional hearings in March were cancelled due to COVID-19. CANEGROWERS Proserpine has made submissions to the inquiry and will pursue points raised in the hearings. An LNP motion in Parliament on 16 June to disallow the commencement of the regulations was voted down by the Queensland Government. CANEGROWERS has always opposed the use of mandatory regulation to achieve water quality or farming sustainability outcomes and was disappointed by this outcome.

Farmers Fight Reef Red Tape with Online Petition
Queensland farmers battling the stealthy rise of Reef Regulations by the Palaszczuk Government are taking the fight direct to State Parliament. The MP sponsored e-petition seeks to reverse legislation pushed through in 2019. The e-petition calls for the Environmental Protection (Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures) and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2019 to be revoked. It also demands the establishment of an Office of Science Quality Assurance to check the science being used to make political decisions.
The petition is open to every Queenslander, and can be found at

Sunwater Online Water Ordering
As from 15 July, water ordering for the Proserpine Water Supply Scheme must be performed via Sunwater’s online and IVR Self Service water ordering systems.
Sunwater Online is available to customers via their secure online facilities and a telephone ordering system, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This system allows irrigators to place orders at any time of day by calling 13 15 89 or accessing
To register for our IVR or SunwaterOnline, please call 13 15 89 Monday to Friday between 8:30am and 4:30pm or alternatively, email the below information through to
  • Sunwater Customer Account Number
  • Your full name
  • Date of birth
  • The address we would have on file for the account
  • The platform you would like to be registered for (IVR or SunwaterOnline).
Once registration is completed, you will be provided with further instruction on placing a water order via your chosen platform. If you need more information, please call Sunwater Customer Support on 13 15 89 Monday to Friday between 8:30am and 4:30pm.

The Fair Work Commission has announced its annual wage review decision, with the minimum wage set to increase by 1.75%. However, the increase will be applicable in a staggered manner for different industries.

The Sugar Industry Award forms part of Group 2 Awards, with the award increase coming into effect from the first full pay period on or after 1 November 2020.

Updated award rates will be distributed by email to all members closer to the commencement date, with printed copies also available from the Proserpine office.
Through workshops, monthly videos and Weekly Notes, the CANEGROWERS Marketing Information Service provides neutral commentary on sugar market trends and the pricing options that may work best in any given set of circumstances.

Click the link below & use your CANEGROWERS membership number to login and read July's update.
CLICK HERE to read the CANEGROWERS Marketing Information Service July update
SSP are reporting a lot of canegrub damage this season. Most of this damage will be from the Greyback canegrub and most of these grubs will now be pupating at depth in the soil. They’ll start emerging as adult beetles from about November, depending on when our first summer storms occur. The amount of damage showing up in this seasons crop indicates a high level of infestation risk for susceptible blocks in the coming season. This means blocks at risk of infestation need to be treated by the end of November this year.

The insecticide, imidacloprid, available under many different product names, is our main registered insecticide treatment. Globally, this insecticide is under intense scrutiny for its potential environmental impacts. It, and other insecticides in the neonicotinoid group, is also being reviewed by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA). This review will continue through to 2023 when the APVMA will deliver their decisions about use of neonicotinoid insecticides in Australia.

What can we do to ensure continued access to imidacloprid?
  1. Make an informed decision about what blocks are at risk of infestation.
    1. Risk of infestation increases with:
  • Blocks that were infested this season are likely to be infested again next season
  • Unprotected blocks with lighter soil textures and particularly adjacent to creek vegetation
  • Ridges and upper slopes
  • Infestations on neighbouring farms
  • Early cut cane (adult beetles seem to be attracted to blocks with taller cane)
    1. Risk of infestation is reduced with:
  • Historical low or nil infestation on particular blocks or parts of blocks
  • Blocks with heavy textured soils for example Black Earth
  • Blocks that have been treated with the controlled release formulation, suSCon maxi Intel® and are still within 4 seasons since application
  1. Apply the insecticide correctly
    1. In ratoons, ensure:
      • It is applied at 100mm to 150mm depth- check that your coulters/double discs/tynes are actually penetrating to this depth (with trash removed!)
      • The insecticide is applied to the base of the slot – check the positioning and angle of the delivery tube
      • The slot is fully filled in – check that you have a slot closing mechanism and that it is effective in your soil types
      • If you have a combined imidacloprid/fertiliser applicator, check that the liquid is not making the fertiliser and soil wet resulting in fertiliser and treated soil being brought to the surface on the rotating discs – if necessary fit a scraper
      • Only use it for canegrub control.
  2. Check out the Bayer Confidor® Guard training video by clicking on the highlighted text (press Ctrl + click): Watch the training video

SRA’s updated Greyback Canegrub Management Manual is currently being printed and will be distributed to growers in September 2020.

Image: a well set up liquid imidacloprid applicator – coulter to cut to depth, double disc to open the slot, delivery nozzle positioned and angled to place insecticide at the base of the slot, press wheel to close the slot.


Imidacloprid insecticides, such as Confidor® Guard are an important tool for the growth of Australian sugarcane, effectively controlling a range of canegrubs. At the same time, you would no doubt be aware of concern regarding detections of Imidacloprid in waterways adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.
In order to understand the causes of waterway contamination and to find ways to address this challenge, a number of research projects have been carried out which have both highlighted a key route of the product entering the waterways, and some possible solutions. 
In response, a cross-industry task force, including Bayer, Nufarm, Sugar Research Australia, and the Queensland Departments of Agriculture and Forestry, and Environment and Science, with additional input from James Cook University have developed a training package, based on these latest research findings which focuses on the correct application of imidacloprid insecticides in ratoon sugarcane. 
When you sign in to the training platform, some of your private details will be collected to demonstrate industry good practice, and to provide you with an e-mail confirmation of undertaking this training you can use this as evidence of participating in Industry training for SmartCane BMP). These details will be dealt with in line with Bayer’s Privacy Policy which can be found at:
Protecting our industry from biosecurity risks, by Dr George Piperidis (SRA)
Quarantine between sugarcane districts in Australia has helped to restrict the spread of serious diseases. The Biosecurity Act (2016) means that everyone must take reasonable steps to ensure that they do not spread a pest, weed seed, disease or contaminant, and that everyone has a responsibility to report unusual events that might be related to biosecurity. You are not expected to know everything about all biosecurity risks, but you are expected to know about risks associated with your work or day-to-day activities in the sugar industry. Importantly, the use of a recommended variety is seen as meeting growers’ obligation to meet minimum disease resistance thresholds

It is important that our local industry continue to adhere to the list of recommended varieties for our region. This list is approved by our Regional Variety Committee (RVC) following review of local trial data and minimum disease resistance thresholds as required by the Sugarcane Industry Biosecurity Committee. There are two lists as shown in the table below: 1) the list of varieties recommended for planting and ratooning, and 2) the list of varieties recommended for ratooning only. These recommended lists are also the reference for varieties accepted under current cane supply agreements.
It is important that growers are familiar with these lists.  They must also be aware that in the coming years some of the varieties in the ratooning only list will be removed after further review by the RVC.

Table 1. Recommended lists for the Central region (Sugarcane Biosecurity Zone 3)
CANEGROWERS Proserpine has many job seekers currently listed on our job board.
Please contact or visit the Proserpine office between 8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, to view their experience & obtain contact details
Managing a drop in production

Worried about delivering your estimated sugar?

QSL growers with committed pricing have multiple options to address in-season production reductions, including:
  • Shifting tonnage between ABNs
  • Rolling pricing forward to the next season
  • Unwinding pricing
The most suitable way to address a committed tonnage shortfall is ultimately determined by the kind of pricing you have undertaken, the value of this, and the current state of the market. As a result, QSL’s primary focus is on working with each grower to identify the options applicable in their unique circumstances.
Should you have concerns about your ability to deliver your estimate, please contact QSL as soon as possible so we can work to identify the most cost-effective way forward for your business.
2023-Season Pricing
QSL is now accepting grower pricing orders for the 2023-Season through our Target Price Contract and Individual Futures Contract pricing products, with additional grower-managed pricing tonnages also available for the 2021 and 2022 Seasons.
 GEI Sugar pricing limits for forward seasons are now:
  • 2021 Season: Up to 65% of your GEI Sugar estimate
  • 2022 Season: Up to 65% of your GEI Sugar estimate
  • 2023 Season: Up to 50% of your GEI Sugar estimate
Sugar Payment Forecast 2020 Season
QSL Direct growers can now access their 2020-Season Sugar Payment Forecast within their online accounts. Your forecast can be found under the 'Reporting' tab for the 2020 Season – just click on the Sugar Payment Forecast button to open the excel spreadsheet with your current indicative payments based on your expected deliveries through to July 2021.

It is important to note that the cash flow data provided only details the GEI sugar payment portion of your QSL Advance payment and does not include any allowances, deductions or adjustments that may be passed on by your Miller.

It provides an estimate only that also does not account for any changes to your current indicative pricing results, which can fluctuate throughout the course of the season and are not finalised until after 30 June each year. As such, we recommend that Growers using this feature regularly generate a new forecast to ensure they are accessing the latest estimate.
Join the QSL Team on Facebook
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  • Stay up-to-date with the sugar market & QSL news
  • Get the tip on the 'Three Things You Should Know' for the coming week (video on Mondays)
  • Boost your understanding of sugar market language with our Jargon Buster on Thursdays
Like and follow our page, and more!
Wilmar AgServices’ new fertiliser delivery reports are now live. This means the next time Wilmar’s fertiliser contractor applies Bio Dunder® liquid fertilisers to your farm, you will receive a delivery report within three days of application.
AgServices Business Manager George Russell said Wilmar had introduced the detailed delivery report to help growers meet record-keeping obligations under the new Reef Regulations. “Starting this season, growers need to keep records of the quantity, rate and amount of nitrogen and phosphorus applied to each individual block,” Mr Russell said. “Our fertiliser delivery report contains essential reporting data at block level about growers’ Bio Dunder® Liquid Fertiliser application.”
Mr Russell urged growers to supply their application contractor with a copy of their current millsupplied farm map to ensure accuracy in reporting. “Prior to application, you’ll need to confirm with your contractor which farm and block number/s the fertiliser is being applied to,” he said.
“Remember, that the more complete the information you provide to the application contractor, particularly block descriptions, the more comprehensive and compliant the report you’ll receive.”
To assist growers with reading and understanding the new delivery report, Wilmar AgServices has created a help sheet. You can find it here.
More information on the new delivery reports is published on Wilmar’s new website.
CLICK HERE for the latest QFF update (dated 20th July, 2020)

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Canegrowers Proserpine · PO Box 374 · Proserpine, Qld 4800 · Australia

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