Page 1


Written & Published By



FREE Money-Making Info For Switched-On Grain Farmers




Beat the Steel Price Rise. Order by Friday 13th June to Save!

Find Out How P4-5

Strategic Farm



Farm Visits P3


A Most-Versatile Tool P8 The Pleasures Of A

Prize Draw WINNER P3



FARM GATE NEWS The Farmer’s Newsletter


PHONE 1800 088 528

GRANT SHEDS PO Box 29, Monash, SA 5342

FAX 08 8583 5402 WEB

What Makes Country Life So Good? ...


See You At The Field


Eyre Peninsula Field Days at Cleve, SA 12th -14th August Tues-T hurs

Riverland Field Days at Barmera, SA 19th - 20th Sept Fri-Sa t If you’d like some help wit h your shed planning we are happy to assist. Or just call in for a chat. We’d love to see you.

Family Celebrations - Birthdays Family is important to us so we try to always have a family meal together on any family member’s birthday. All of the ‘littlies’ join the birthday person and help blow out the candles. This way, they all join in the excitement.

Ali’s birthday in March.

Brenton’s birthday on Anzac Day. You’ll often talk with Brenton when you phone our office.

May is birthday time for our son in law, Matt and for Danny. Our family easter lunch. Held outside where we could watch and be involved with the kids playing.

Easter The weekend before Easter we had a family lunch. We did it the week before Easter because we were heading off on a house boat with friends for the Easter break. It also leaves our adult children free to do their own thing or visit the partner’s families on the Easter weekend.

Delightful squeals followed as the kids raced ahead of each other to collect as many eggs as possible in their little Easter baskets, and later pool them to make sure they each get an equal quantity each.

We love watching these little cousins enjoying each others company and seeing them have such enjoyment from simple, outdoors fun and games. Turn off those electronic gadgets and the TV and turn ‘em outside for some good, old fashioned, run-around FUN! Enjoy the stories in this edition of FARM GATE NEWS. It’s a beauty!

Every year we have the much anticipated Easter egg hunt. Beforehand, the kids play together, make an Easter Bunny ‘nest,’ and use chalk to draw on our concrete verandahs and carport floor. It keeps them amused until Easter Bunny arrives and spreads the easter eggs throughout the garden.

Riley, Ayden & Kallie at our Easter lunch.

Ali & Danny Halupka Owners, Grant Sheds

Easter On The Murray

Danny enjoying the captians chair.

Having enjoyed a house-boating weekend at Easter last year, our interstate friends were keen to do it again this year. We enjoyed a wonderful 7 days on the River Murray with a lovely houseboat from ‘RiverFun Houseboats’ at Renmark and headed upstream.

If you’ve never done this yourself before, we highly recommend that you put it on your holiday list. The river is just so beautiful and so serene. It is unbelievably relaxing. A great way to wind down. And there’s plenty of activities if you want them including canoeing, water skiing, bush walking, fishing etc. We had to laugh though as our city friends were surprised to find there were areas where we had

P2 FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter

no TV or internet reception. “Turn it all off I say,” but then I’m not much of a TV watcher anyway (Ali). But we all had a laugh as one of our friends scaled the cliffs, laptop in a bag on his back, to get internet access so he could make some internet banking payments. If you ever want some advice on hiring a River Murray houseboat, sing out and we’ll be happy to share some suggestions with you.

You Little Ripper... Grant Sheds

Local Aussie Legends FREE BEER For Builders Thank you to the following wonderful people who sent us details of local shed builders that we requested in the last issue.

WINNER of the Grant Sheds Chance To Win $50,000 Prize Draw Greg Klopp from Maitland SA was the lucky person drawn for the Chance To Win $50,000 Prize Draw in April. Greg was unable to attend the final draw because he was fulfilling his promise to attend the live show, “Mrs Brown’s Boys,” in Adelaide on the day of the final draw. So instead, Greg selected an envelope number and our independent competition scrutineer from Sydney, oversaw the prize draw. Unfortunately Greg didn’t win the $50,000 Big Prize (which would have paid for his new caravan) but he did win a $1000 consolation prize which certainly should have given them a good time at their show in Adelaide. Congratulations Greg. Even a $1000 Cash Prize is a nice surprise when all of us think “I never win anything!”

So when you have a shed built by a Grant Sheds builder, you can rest assured your shed will be well built and, importantly, you’ll have no hassles.

• Justin Modra, Ungarra SA • Renee Fulwwod, Tintinara SA • Ben Schutz, Eudunda SA • Fraser & Kristen McEvoy, Warooka SA • Trevor Colliver, Cleve SA • Shawn Klose, Cambrai SA • Peter Wallis, Pinnaroo SA

Beat the Steel Price Rise. Order by Friday 13th June to Save!

These 8 people, received cartons of beer for the 11 shed builders that they referred to us. Now we’ll set to work contacting them all to line up more, exceptional and dedicated shed builders to join our team. We know that these referred builders will be of much higher calibre than if we’d found them via advertisements in newspapers or through employment agencies. People generally only refer people that they believe are good. We hold very high standards for our builders, in quality of workmanship and also in being well organised, and sticking to their schedules. We do not allow them to slip other work in between scheduled jobs. We also require them to be neat, friendly and helpful.

Builder Steve has worked with us for around 25 years! Here’s the equipment he brings with him to build sheds quickly and safely. Crane truck, Scissor-lift, Bobcat and Hydraplat, plus of course all his power tools and staff.

PHIL ARBON - Balaklava

we called into Though he may not even know it, ng the Bigg’s. seei after arvo Phil’s farm late in the took a few photos Phil & Trish weren’t home so we again. of their new ‘Grant’ shed and left


it was still their new shed. Here ted ple com t jus ’ve We here, but see to d har bit a may be under construction. It d). To the right of cla be to t ll in the shed (ye en on the front, there is a partition wa op a, Machinery Shed are Mark’s Chemical the partition wall is the is ll wa on titi par the left of be where l with 2x9m bays. To the wil left the enclosed bay on Shed area. The 4.5m right of that will be a the to bay 9m the and chemicals are stored not yet installed in the his spray unit. While drive- through bay for ing doors each side so slid has through bay photo below, the drivesecure. it’s fully lockable and


Phil Arbon’s new 10m x 18m x 5.1m drive-through shed with pit for vehicle servicing.

Phil & Sandy Kernich at Yamba, and their daughter Chelsea (in the seat of the bulldozer).

Partition Wall

Chemical Shed end

That’s Phil on our front cover this month and we’ll have a story on them in our next edition. Machinery Shed end

Chris Bigg, also at Balaklava, to discuss his new shed. Chris and Mark are brothers. & Chemical Storage x 31m x 6m Machinery Mark Bigg’s new 18m webbed roof trusses. and ns um col strong UB Shed made with super-

FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter P3

NSW Rice Growers Explain The


John Pocklington, Danny Halupka, Grant Sheds owner, and Peter Pocklington view the rice block back in November 2013. A panoramic view of part of the area sown to rice. Elsie Pocklington and her two sons, John & Peter, are rice and wheat growers from Bunnaloo in NSW, between Echuca and Deniliquin. Between them they farm over 5000 acres and include sheep and cattle in their farming mix, along with wheat and rice. Elsie was born in Drouin, east of Melbourne, to a father with “itchy feet” so they moved around a bit. It wasn’t until Elsie was married that she settled in one place. This was on her current land – almost 60 years ago, which her husband Eric had already just purchased. Son Peter now lives on the original Pocklington piece of land from 1900, which was John & Peter’s great grandfather’s original selection. Peter’s children are fifth generation. That’s on the Pocklington side of the family and on their grandmother’s side the family goes back another two generations in the district to the 1860’s. Today, they have approximately 50 hectares of rice growing. They have water to grow a lot more rice but they can’t physically grow it because of restrictions in soil use. People can’t just plant rice wherever they like. It is the most controlled crop growing in Australia (apart from Opium). Farmers are controlled on how much water they can use, what soil types they can grow it on and rice is the only irrigated industry where they are routinely monitored for chemicals exiting the farm via water. Soil tests have to be done where rice is to be planted. They have to be bored to 20 feet, or now

they can do what is called an ‘EM34’ survey which electronically checks the soil. “They just drive over the area with some electronic gear and that charts the soil types,” says John. The soil has to come up to a certain spec where it doesn’t allow the water to go through. The permeability has got to be below a certain figure. The water is on the soil for 5 months, up to 200 mm’s deep, and the amount of water lost into the soil over that period would be only .1 or .2 of a megalitre per hectare. There’s very little water going into the soil. The rice season starts around the beginning of October and most growers try to have their crop in before November. The water is on the soil from sowing time and is switched off in March, with the crop ready to harvest in April. The sowing is not done like a conventional grain crop would be sown. Almost unbelievably, it is done by air!

50 hectares of rice can be sown by air in less than an hour! The plane is loaded with a tonne of seed and is sown at around 150kgs per hectare, covering about 6 ½ -7 hectares per plane load. The seed is pre-germinated by soaking it in a tank filled with water for 24 hours, then drained and sown within 24-48 hours, when it is already starting to germinate. It has a tiny little bud on it and has a head start before it even hits the cold

P4 FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter

water in the paddy. Spraying is even quicker than sowing because they don’t have to refill, they just do a whole block in one tank. “Rice is a very reliable crop,” explains Peter, “Apart from the duck problems we’ve had in the past 2 years, where massive numbers of ducks ate our growing crop, we’ve only ever had one other failure since 1966-1967 when the crop was so heavy it fell down. With the machinery back then, we couldn’t get it off the ground.” The Pocklington’s have increased their annual harvest from an average of 2.5 tonnes per acre up to about 4.5 tonnes per acre in that period. There is much misconception of the rice industry in South Australia. The Pocklington’s argue it should be one of the main irrigation crops because it’s an opportunity crop. When water is available they grow it and when it’s not available, and the environment needs it, they don’t. Just about every other crop has to take the water or the crop dies. Another interesting fact that John adds: “During the drought, when there was no water allocation, the rice that was grown was used to keep our premium export markets and quarantine area supplied.”

The rice grown here is superior to most rices in the world. It’s got a better shelf life and restaurants can keep


The Polkington’s from Bunnaloo, NSW, tell their fascinating story about rice growing in Australia plus their experience with direct drilling vs conventional for wheat crops. it for longer after it has been cooked, whereas the imported rice must be served or thrown out within 30 minutes of it being cooked. Rice harvesting is done with a conventional grain header once the rice block has dried out, but for harvesting rice the header is fitted with a peg drum rather than the standard brass bar drums. And Peter adds, “If they have rotary headers, they’ve got rotors and quite often stainless steel enhancement because rice is very abrasive. Where you might get 5000-6000 hours out of a cereal only machine it is likely to be less than half this for a machine that harvests rice. “So don’t buy rice headers second hand,” warns Peter, “The sheet metal through them is worn out.” The rice gets delivered off farm with the husk still on it. The growers are paid on milled grain content. The buyers like it to be harvested at 18-20% moisture content. If it goes under 18% the mill out rate falls off and then you get more ‘brokens’, then they have to store it and in storage they take it down to around 16% and when they mill it they take the moisture up to 18% again. It gets stored in aerated sheds rather than ordinary silos so they can control the moisture. The Pocklington’s also grow wheat but can be affected by the rainfall for the district. Their average yield is ½ tonne to the acre, or 2 tonnes to the hectare. If they get 10” at the right time of the year they can have a really bonanza year. The Pocklington’s have been direct drilling for about ten years and they claim it’s starting to show. “It’s got a lot of faults,” Peter claims from his experience. “We’re having a lot of disease problems - crown rot’s a big one this year.” Some of the bigger players in the area are looking at more conventional ways… burning the stubble and long fallowing. “It’s great for the chemical companies but we’re not getting a good enough season to make these chemicals work the way they’re supposed to work. When you get a chemical breakdown, your paddock’s no good to you. We’re doing all sorts of things to stop the growing bridges

or the residues,” Peter adds. “And we don’t get a reliable enough season to take opportunity of rotational crops. Everyone spruiks canola but I work on the theory that if you can’t have it germinate and out of the ground by the end of April it’s not worth doing.”

“That’s according to the Vegetation Act,” adds Peter. “Because we were nursing our country the native grasses always came back. We figured our regime was friendly yet the law said it wasn’t, so we got hammered with that.”

Instead, John tells us, “We’ve been sticking pretty hard with cereals and just spreading the rotation. And that’s one of the problems where the Greens have nailed us yet again. We operate on long rotation. When we walk out of a paddock it will be out of crop for 3-14 years. The NSW government introduced that if a paddock hadn’t been cropped for 10 years you couldn’t crop it again – it became a native pasture.”

The Pocklington’s 1984 Grant Sheds Machinery Shed. 40’ x 75’ x 12’ was big enough then, but too small now for their header.

5 Super-Strong ‘GRANT’ Farm Sheds Of course, we are talking with Elsie, Peter and John because they are part of our Grant Sheds family. Here are the ‘Grant’ farm sheds they have purchased over a 47 year period.

1967 1979 1984 1992 2014

20’ x 30’ x 12’ 30’ x 60’ x 12’ 40’ x 75’ x 12’ 25’ x 60’ x 12’ 40’ x 90’ x 17’

Mouseproof Barn Workshop & Machinery Shed Machinery Shed Shearing Shed Machinery Shed (12m x 27 x 5.1m)

Apart from the 1st, they have built them all themselves.

Here are their answers to why they keep buying ‘Grant’ sheds: “You’re more than competitive. Your sheds have stood by us in the past and I had a look at the shed specs (with this newest one) and you over-specified compared with your competition. For example, the columns in your shed are 20mm bigger compared with a similar size shed from others we contacted.” John Pocklington “We’ve always had good results with the sheds you’ve supplied.” Elsie Pocklington The steel materials used in Grant Sheds are much more robust and stronger than what John saw with other brands. And of course,

Grant Sheds has an exceptional ... 50 Year Guarantee! FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter


Grain Farmers...


e. storage of grain at harvest tim ST FA low Al s ed Sh ge ra Sto their On-farm Grain vvy Grain Farmers to increase sa s ow all & s es str es uc red is Th ain Prices are best.  Grain Profit by selling when Gr owers MAKE MORE MONEY Gr ain Gr art Sm w Ho arn Le To Get Your FREE Info Pack

Andrew Cass, Loxton SA

Having on-farm grain storage sheds takes the problem out of managing the delivery of grain at harvest time. It helps increase your income because you have marketing flexibility and it reduces harvest time stress and wasted time travelling to and waiting at silos.

Annette & Andrew Cass have 3 Grant Sheds Bulk Grain Sheds on their Loxton property that hold 6000 tonnes of grain. And with their smart farm business practice of “cycling” grain through their sheds during harvest, it can equate to 12,000 -15,000 tonnes or more of on-farm storage.

Kieran Hayter of Linga, near Underbool, Vic, owns a 12m x 36m x 5.1m Grain shed that holds up to 1250 tonnes of wheat.

“I can pick up $30-$40 per tonne with grain stored in it. Multiply that by 1000 tonnes and it’s an extra $30,000 pocketed.”

for 3-6 months after “We’re committed to holding grain over increases. harvest because we always gain price With a Grain Shed we’ve actually gained quite a bit of money by holding over the grain when prices are low. It adds up pretty quick.”

Michael & Dianne Anderson, Karoonda, SA

Get Your FREE Bulk Grain Shed Info Pack

“Money-Making Stories From Switched-On Grain Farmers” Valued at $47


Start your planning early if you want to build a Bulk Grain Shed for next harvest. You really need to be making your profit-making decision now. So don’t wait. Get the FREE Information Package and get your ball rolling now.

Phone Brenton on

Freecall 1800 088 528 Or email: And ask for the Grain Sheds Info Pack

P6 P6 FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter

Discover The Benefits Of



“Where’s That Bloody Invoice...?!”

Steel prices are set to increase.

Order Your New Shed Before June 13 to SAVE ! Be Quick … Our Building Schedules Fill FAST!

Our building schedules are filled on a “1st in-1st served” basis so don’t wait until the last minute to place your order. Do it now to beat the rush. Order your new shed and pay your deposit by Friday 13th of June to save money. We’ll assist you with your planning, council approvals and building. But you’ll need to hurry! June 13th will be here before you know it!

Freecall 1800 088 528

*Conditions Apply

GET YOUR TAX PLANNING DONE EARLY A wise man once told me that timing of a decision is not just something, it is everything, so getting things done on time is just another part of management that the top 20% of farmers get right. Completing things on time is usually an outcome of the quality of preparation and planning that go into a decision beforehand and is all within our control.

the financial year. Note: This is also important for grape growers and all other farmers-talk to your accountant before the end of the financial year.

In my early farm management days I had it drummed into me that a week of delay from the optimum sowing date meant a decline in yield of up to 250 kg/hectare from the potential yield. This meant little to me until I came to understand the French Schultz model of potential yield which linked yield potential to growing season rainfall. What this highlighted to me was that many of the best operators only averaged between 60-70% of their potential and only on exceptional seasons did it ever go close to reaching the potential.

Meeting with your accountant is no longer just about minimising your tax. It also involves decisions on superannuation, business structure management and strategic investment.

By understanding all the factors that go towards reaching potential it became clear to me that this was a good tool for analysing and diagnosing the areas of your management that needed more attention. Getting your crop in on time is a pivotal factor behind yield potential and it is no surprise that croppers have a steely focus when it comes to “pulling the trigger” on seeding. With such a focus many other things in the business can be put out of their minds, and when seeding finishes a mountain of other jobs await their attention. One area that should have taken priority before seeding was the taxation review and if this has not been done I suggest this to be the first job on the list when you pull the tractor out of the last paddock. With post emergent weeds about to rear their ugly heads and much time required on the boom spray you cannot expect the accountant to drop everything to see you a day or two before the end of

It is not just the time taken in the appointment but there may be follow up work to be done as well before the June 30 deadline.

There is nothing like a tight deadline to result in a poor decisions. Rushing a decision is not a good practice. When I visit my accountant I spend the weeks prior making a list of questions that I want to ask. I type them up and leave a couple of lines of space under each question which allows me to write the answers or make additional notes. At the start of the appointment I give my accountant a copy of the questions so he has a clear idea of what I am seeking from him. By doing this, not only do I have a good reference document, I don’t have to remember all the detail and at the same time I am more confident that I getting good value for my money from my accountant’s fees. Earning money is hard enough, let alone paying more tax than you should due to your inability to get the job done on time. If bookwork is not to your liking, then I suggest you discipline yourself hard to get good systems in place to reduce the perceived pain that you experience, and maybe things will get done on time. Who knows, it may eventually become enjoyable. Printed with approval of Ken Solly & Stock Journal newspaper

Do you experience overwhelm, frustration and despair whenever you have to do your paperwork or whenever you go into your office? Are you in a constant state of anxiety because you can’t find anything in your messy office? Well... Understand it’s not your fault and you are not alone. From my experience with farmers over about 33 years, most farmers are a mess when it comes to their paperwork. There is mail to open, wages to pay, bills to sort out, bank statements and credit cards to organise, BAS statements to complete, invoices to file, spray diaries to complete...the list just goes on and on... Where are you supposed to find the time to sort it all out when you haven’t even got time to get through all your farming work and family commitments? It’s exhausting and you’ve learnt to HATE PAPERWORK! Am I right? For the easy solution to Farm Office Bill Filing, see this month’s flyer included with this newsletter.

The Farm Office Bill Filing Solution mentioned above is a good start and the beginning of the new financial year is a great time to get started.

Ken Solly runs his own Agribusiness Consulting at Naracoorte in SA. He runs Lifetime Ewe Management and Best Wool Best Lamb groups across the South East of SA and Western Victoria. He delivers training workshops in farm management and sheep production and is a conference speaker. Ken writes the feature article ‘Mind your Business’ for the Stock Journal newspaper and contributes to a wide range of other magazines. Coaching and mentoring young people in Agribusiness, in particular or 0427 620895

FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter P7 P7

GRANT SHEDS For Mother’s Day

Grandma’s Apron I don’t think our kids know what an apron is. The principle use of grandma’s apron was to protect the dress underneath because she only had a few. It was easier to wash aprons and they used less material. But along with that they served as a pot holder to remove hot pans from the oven. It was wonderful for drying children’s tears and on occasion was used for cleaning out children’s dirty ears. From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks and sometimes halfhatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven. When company came, those aprons were ideal for hiding places for shy kids and when the weather was cold, Grandma wrapped it around her arms. Those big old aprons wiped away many a perspiring brow bent over the hot wood stove. Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron. From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables. And when the peas had been shelled, it carried out

the hulls. In the autumn the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees. When unexpected company drove up the road, it was amazing how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds. When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron and the men knew it was time to come in from the fields for dinner. It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that old time apron that served so many purposes. Send this to those who would know and love the story about Grandma’s aprons. It can be a good history lesson for those who have no idea how the apron played such an important part in our lives. Remember Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool. Her granddaughter’s set theirs on the window sill to thaw. They would go crazy now, trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron.

I don’t think I ever caught anything from that apron ... but LOVE ! Thanks Gran xoxo


but a woman’s job, Housework was m work to fro e m ho arrived of evening, Janice ad lo bathed, one in the find the children r he ot an d an sher the d laundry in the wa an e, s on the stov dryer. Dinner wa ! ed sh ni s asto table set. She wa article that Dave had read an d to do their It turns out that ha d an e work full-tim sex’. said, ‘Wives who re too tired to have we k or ew own hous xt day, Janice very well. The ne The night went d a great ha e ‘W all about it. told her friends chen. He cleaned up the kit dinner. Dave even eir homework, folded all th joyed the helped the kids do it away. I really en t pu d an ry nd the lau evening.’ her friends. terwards?’ asked ‘But what about af s too tired.’ ‘Oh, that? Dave wa

1970s Doris Telfer (nee Lawton) Alison’s Grandmother and Grant Telfer’s Mum. A hard-working country lady. Wife and partner on a Monash fruit block. Mother of 3 children, grandmother of 10. President of Monash CWA for many years. School Welfare Club, Librarian at once per week Monash Library. Organiser of Monash Handicraft group. Tower of strength mother. Sensational grandmother. Anyone who has a lady like this in their life should be eternally grateful. Note the apron-this is why Ali loves this “Grandma’s Apron” description so much.

With Mother’s Day in May we thought these would get a laugh Happy Mother’s Day

WIVES What’s the difference between a wife and a terrorist? You can negotiate with a terrorist. My wife says I never listen to her. At least I think that’s what she said.



E “Dr Jones...At Your CervFIC ix”

BLONDE FINANCE From Poc klingtons A blonde woman was sol d double glazing , and the salesm an said, “You’ve made a wise de cision. It’ll pay for itself within 12 mo nths.” The glass company didn’t get paid, and couldn’t understan d why. When they chased her for the money, the woman said, “You said it would pay for itself in 12 months!”




A wishbone, A backbone, and a funnybone

GRANT SHEDS PO Box 29, Monash SA 5342 EMAIL © Copyright New Horizons (SA) Pty Ltd, Trading as “Grant Sheds” No portion of this newsletter may be reproduced without the written permission of the publisher. This newsletter is distributed with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering any legal or professional advice of any kind. The publisher disclaims any personal liability for the information, advice, recommendations and/or strategies presented within. It is up to the reader to comply with any local, state or federal laws.

FARM GATE NEWS: The Farmer’s Newsletter

PHONE 1800 088 528


GRANT SHEDS SA 5342 FAX 08 8583 Grant ShedsPO Box PO 29, BoxMonash, 29 Monash SA 5342 Fax: 08 5402 8583 WEB web:

Farmgate News May/June 14  

South Australia's Premier Shed Building Magazine published by Grant Sheds