Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Port Looks to Expand Share of US Meat Exports to Asia with Construction of New Rail Spur

Oakland Continues to Expand Overseas Trade as Logistics Groups Build Distribution Centre
Shipping News Feature
US – The Port of Oakland says its ability to serve its Far-Eastern markets with American farm produce have taken a great step forward with the confirmation that the Port's Commissioners have cleared the construction of an $11 million rail spur to Cool Port Oakland, a 280,000-square-foot temperature controlled freight distribution centre now under construction on 25 acres of Port property.

When the project is completed, an estimated 27,000, 20-foot containers of meat could ship from Oakland annually to Asia as Port of Oakland Maritime Director, John Driscoll, explained:

“The concept is to bring vast quantities of chilled or frozen beef and pork to Oakland via the rails. At Cool Port, the product would be transferred in a temperature-controlled setting from rail cars to shipping containers, then whisked across the street to outbound vessels.”

International logistics specialists Lineage Logistics and local operator Dreisbach Enterprises are building Cool Port, which is expected to open in the third quarter of 2018, under a lease agreement with the Port. The Port has agreed to oversee construction of the 2-mile-long rail spur. The Port will share rail costs with the developers. A $5 million grant will offset part of the cost and the Union Pacific group will construct a portion of the spur on its property.

Oakland is already a leading US gateway to Asia for agricultural products including meat. Port officials say Cool Port could significantly increase shipments of beef and pork from the Midwest. The products would be exported overseas to satisfy growing Asian demand for American meat and the Port says proximity to the docks means cargo could be quickly transferred from rail to ship with minimal cost.