Yes, ‘Trader Wayne’ sounds like someone from the Wild West – but he’s actually based in Toowoomba not too far from the mill. The rye flour that he has supplied to us comes from a farmer in South Australia.
Wayne is a commodity trader who focuses on contacting farmers all over Australia and negotiating deals for their crops (both organic and non-organic). Basically he got in ahead of us and snaffled a significant amount of organic rye from a farmer in South Australia, whose name he cannot disclose to us, for reasons of protecting his business. This is also why we have no photos of this farmer to show you.
However, Wayne did then sell this rye grain on to us, filling the gap in our inventory that had come about as organic rye crops in Queensland have become harder and harder to source.
For many years Kialla was able to source organic rye from the Darling Downs, however farmers stopped growing it organically for several reasons. The major reason is that there is not a large demand for organic rye flour, which means the farmer doesn’t get a great price per tonne for a grain that very few people are interested in. So if you love baking with rye flour, please encourage all your friends so that the demand will increase and make it more viable for farmers to grow!
Another reason is that yields are lower for this crop than for other grain crops in the Darling Downs area. South Australia is actually much better, in terms of climate and soil type, for growing rye which tends to yield better in the dryer southern winters.