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THE Victorian government has invested $125,000 to produce the Western Victoria Grain Industry Supply Chain Study.

Victorian minister for ports and freight Melissa Horne said the study will prove vital in developing a safer and stronger road and rail freight network, delivering long term freight efficiencies and benefits to the industry.

The study aims to identify changes to production and the volume of grain likely to be harvested and transported over the next 25 years.

It also aims to assist in freight industry efficiencies and improve the competitiveness of the grain industry.

The SouthWest Victoria Alliance will deliver the project, along with local government, industry and input from the Victorian Department of Transport.

The study is modelled on the Dairy Supply Chain Study undertaken in 2018. The grain study will also generate valuable, essential data and technical insight to plan for and manage the future needs of our road and rail freight network.

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The role of rail in the grain industry supply chain will be considered, along with opportunities to increase its share in the freight task.

Existing grain silos will also be mapped and examined while optimal locations for new ones will be identified together with sites that could benefit from additional intermodal hubs.

Other areas of focus will include projected routes, including transporting grain from farms to grain receival centres and viewing the supply chains from processing and manufacturing facilities to key export gateways.

The government’s $125,000 investment for the $250,000 project is being funded through the Flexible Local Transport Solutions Program, which supports evidence-based transport and freight studies that can inform investment decisions leading to the more efficient movement of freight at local levels.

The remainder of funding for the project will come from Great South Coast, Wimmera Southern Mallee and Central Highlands Regional partnerships and associated Local Government Authorities in the region.

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