Fengrain, the co-operative grain storage and marketing business based near Ely, has agreed a joint venture barley storage project with the Crisp Malting Group (CMG) in Norfolk at the same time as it opens a new procurement office in Kent.
The company, with 900 members and 120,000 tonnes of storage at its Wimblington complex, is to build a 10,000 tonne store at the maltster’s Great Ryburgh facility near Fakenham. The four new silos will be constructed on land leased from Crisp, adjacent to its existing store. Starting this month, the project should be ready for harvest 2016.
Bob King, commercial director at CMG, says the partnership will help his business improve the quality of the barley raw material entering the maltings through a tighter supply chain and a closer focus on Fengrain growers providing what Crisp requires, rather than supplying what they have grown. As well as having the material on site from harvest, it will also reduce the haulage miles per tonne, saving both cost and carbon. “CMG is very pleased with the start of construction for our joint venture storage project at Great Ryburgh which further strengthens our malting barley supply from Fengrain,” he says.
At the same time, Phil Garnham joins the Fengrain marketing team as a malting barley specialist in mid January. He is currently feed and raw materials manager at Anglia Farmers.
“During the year we have taken steps to expand our geographical coverage so that farmers in new areas have the opportunity to share in Fengrain’s business model,” says Fengrain chairman Paul Wilkinson. “Whilst we remain focused on local grain marketing and storage, we are ambitious to grow.”
The new grain marketing operation in Kent, commencing this month, is part of the expansion. It will be overseen by senior trader Tim Porter, who joins from the Kent-based grain trader GH Grain, now part of Frontier Agriculture.
Mr Porter will work with Fengrain’s existing team of buyers and specialist traders to develop the business in the Kent region with the full range of Fengrain contracts, pools, prices and marketing options. He will be based at an office near Canterbury, but with full support and back-up from the Fengrain head office.
“Our strategic expansion programme will allow us to work with more growers and continue to grow the business for the benefit of all its members,” concludes Fengrain managing director Rob Munro.