AUSVEG SA is currently facilitating an opportunity for South Australian growers to bulk purchase energy as a consolidated tender to help alleviate rising costs and secure a better deal.

It has engaged Choice Energy, an established energy broker, to investigate growers’ current energy use and determine whether savings could be achieved by consolidating industry demand and tendering as an industry buying group.

This approach has been successful in other industries and AUSVEG SA is keen to help facilitate a similar buying group in horticulture to secure a better deal for growers.

Some growers may already be tendering as individual businesses; however, the concept behind establishing a bulk buying group for energy is to pool energy use from a group of businesses (likely to be in the millions of dollars) and then tender this to retailers to lock in a price on a yearly basis. By pooling this demand participants are likely to get a better rate and tariff than through individual business arrangements.

The process

  • A business signs a release form allowing Choice Energy to obtain necessary usage information and provides a power bill or relevant agreement.
  • Choice Energy then consolidates interested growers into a buying group and proceeds to deal with individual businesses.
  • Choice Energy then tenders the buying group’s business to energy retailers and negotiates a rate using the buying group’s increased purchasing power.
  • AUSVEG SA is not directly involved in the process once businesses sign up and deal with the broker. The organisation is acting as a facilitator to see if a better deal is achievable for growers and is helping to pull together interest to form the buying group.

Why AUSVEG SA is investigating this option

  • AUSVEG SA is aware of successful examples in other industries where bulk energy buying groups have been able to achieve significant savings on electricity – in some cases, up to 30 per cent.
  • AUSVEG SA has the networks to pull together a significant group of energy users who can combine energy usage as a joint buying group and in theory have a better negotiating position with energy retailers than individual businesses

If you’re a South Australian grower and you’re interested in participating in the energy buying group, contact AUSVEG SA on 0404 772 308 or via e-mail at to obtain a copy of the release form and documentation necessary to participate. Any further questions can be directed to AUSVEG SA CEO Jordan Brooke-Barnett on 0404 772 308.

Choice Energy is also available to discuss the process in further detail using the contact details on its website.

This post appeared in the AUSVEG Weekly Update published 24 July 2018. Subscribe to the Update using our online form to receive the latest industry news in your inbox every week!