The Port of Oakland has recorded a 20% growth in refrigerated export volume, reinforcing its position as the largest exporter of refrigerated cargo in containers among US ports.
From August 2018 to July 2019, the port handled 119,756 teu of refrigerated exports – up from 99,740 in the same period a year ago.
John Driscoll, Port of Oakland’s maritime director, said: “Our business partners are investing to meet increased overseas demand for US farm goods.
“When you couple their expertise with our infrastructure, it makes a compelling case for running the transportation cold chain through Oakland.”
The port’s fastest-growing refrigerated exports were beef and pork products from the US Midwest, with beef exports increasing 45% in the past year while pork volume is up 38% in the same period.
Oakland attributed the growth to strong consumer demand, increased US farm production and the port’s location on the eastern edge of the Pacific Rim.
For Asia-bound container ships leaving the US, Oakland is the final stop making it the fastest gateway to Asia for shippers of perishables.
The port is considered one of the nation’s top gateways for refrigerated agricultural products, in part due to its location near California’s fertile Central Valley. To tap into Midwest agricultural exporters, the port relies on rail connections.
The port has taken steps to strengthen its foothold in cold chain logistics over the past decade including developing new distribution capability, extending operating hours and installing hundreds of additional electrical outlets to plug in reefers.
Last year Lineage Cool Port Oakland – a collaboration of logistics and warehousing industry leaders, Lineage Logistics and Dreisbach Enterprises, opened at the port.
The 283,000 sq ft refrigerated distribution centre handles containerised perishables, mostly beef and pork.
Other companies which provide temperature-controlled services for exporters through Oakland include PCC Logistics, Pacific Transload Systems, AGRO Merchants Group, Preferred Freezer Services, United Cold Storage, Americold and United States Cold Storage.