Posted 06 November 2003 - 11:13 AM
G'day Agen Michael.
I had not read your initial post when responding to your Emu [very large chuck] taunt. [was it yours or pale'uns]
Anyway, Dr Robson, in his "Australia & the Great War" comments:-
'In the case of the wheat industry, the harvest of 1915-16 promised to be the largest in Australia's history. It was. Britain was prepared to buy this crop because of the reduction in supply of imported wheat from Russia and the likelihood of the failure of the North American harvest. These facts, together with the scarcity of shipping...
[led to formation of Wheat Board] In addition Britain bought the whole refrigerated beef and mutton supply for the rest of the War'.
Robson appends relevant parliamentary papers, in which PM Hughes,on 10/11/15, explains the "scarcity of freight" as being a consequence of 25% of the world's tonnage being locked up in enemy ports, or at the bottom of the sea, [with] a further 20% being requisitioned by the British Admiralty for transport and war purposes.
Admittedly these "events' occured well after the Dardanelles Campaign began, but do make specific reference to the Russian crop. Your "unheard of reason" could be strengthened by the fact that significant measures were implemented only in November 1915 by which time the Russian wheat would be seen as improbable.
Although not specifically stated, I have always believed that Britain bought the total wheat crop, less domestic usage, for the duration.