U.S. Ag shippers voice concern over possible port closures

U.S. exporters are "extremely worried" of massive economic loss, to their individual companies and all others in the supply chain
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
September 13, 2012 - LM Editorial

As the International Longshoreman’s Association and the U.S. Maritime Alliance (marine terminal operators at the ports) prepare to resume negotiations, The Agriculture Transportation Coalition is telling its members that the disruptive impact is already being felt in locations far from the coastal seaports

“The prospect of a strike would cripple international commerce, and has U.S. exporters extremely worried of massive economic loss, to their individual companies and all others in the supply chain,” said Peter Friedmann, Executive Director of the Agriculture Transportation Coalition.

Friedmann said that ocean carriers charged with moving agriculture and forest products exports to global markets, have announced “dramatic” freight rate surcharges, contingent on port disruption at any North American port.

“Such surcharges increase the cost of transportation to the extent that foreign customers could not afford U.S. agriculture products, and will turn to sources in other countries,” he said.

The prospect that these surcharges will be imposed, are already causing agriculture producers to slow production if they can, to hold back on export commitments, added Friedmann.

“So the economic injury has already begun, even before the current east and gulf coast longshore labor contract expires on September 30,” he said.

The AgTC is asking the Administration and its Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service to do all in its authority to bring the parties together, to either resolve differences quickly so the prospect of a strike or port closure is eliminated, or to gain an agreement to continue working, while negotiations continue.

“This is harvest season for much of our agriculture destined for foreign markets,” said Friedmann. “Failure to keep the ports operating at full capacity this fall will have devastating impact on agriculture and thus the entire economy. The uncertainty is already slowing production and deliveries,”



About the Author

image
Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor

Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Subscribe to Logistics Management magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your
entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

As was the case for the second quarter, third quarter earnings results for publicly-traded less-than-truckload (LTL) carriers are again strong. Signs of solid earnings results from carriers that have posted earnings to date include tonnage increases, gains in weight per shipment and average daily shipments, higher yield, and revenue per hundredweight.

While the holiday season is known to bring good tidings and cheer to all, it may also come with another thing that is not so pleasant: higher rate freights. That was the thesis of a commentary written by Mark Montague, industry pricing analyst and chief market-watcher for DAT, a Portland, Ore.-based subsidiary of TransCore.

Earlier this week, FedEx said it is expanding its International First service for early deliveries with the addition of 31 new origin countries, which will bring the total number of origin markets for the service to 97.

Monday, December 22 is pegged as UPS's peak delivery day, as the company expects to deliver more than 34 million packages that day, adding that it expects to see six days in December top last year’s peak shipment day delivery record of 31 million packages.

The time has come again for less-than-truckload (LTL) general rate increases (GRI), with various carriers recently announced their respective rate hikes in recent days.

Article Topics

News · Ocean Freight · Ocean Cargo · Trade · All topics

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. Patrick covers international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. Contact Patrick Burnson

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.


© Copyright 2013 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA