FTLComm - Tisdale - December 12, 2000

When you take that break at your water treatment plant or where ever it is that you have a brew now and then, the main constituent of the product is malt barley. The farmer loading his $3.00 a bushel barley into grain cars yesterday told me that 3¢ worth of that bottle of beer goes into the cost of the barley.

The Wheat Board initial price for a semi full of this
product amounts to no more
than $1,300 worth of grain
for the farmer. The only thing that makes this a viable operation is the fact that this year's crop produced an excellent yield and the volume will have to provide the farmer with the income to do it all again next year.

This grain is being sold to the Wheat Board and to save themselves the cost of processing through the grain elevators these farmers are doing the loading themselves and saving $11 a tonne. With margins as tight as they are, every little bit counts and $11 is more than a little bit when you see this many cars being loaded.