The Port of Savannah is increasing its cold chain logistics capabilities with new shipping routes designed to export frozen poultry from the U.S. and import produce and seasonal apparel from Central and South America, the port said today.
On Wednesday, the port had its first visit from Seaboard Marine's vessel Atlantic, opening one new trade channel to Central America, and another to Latin America and the Caribbean. The initial Seaboard Marine service to Savannah features two vessels in a direct, all-water route, for an increase of 20,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) per year to Garden City Terminal's total vessel inventory.
The ocean carrier's first service to Savannah links the Southeastern U.S. to northern Central America, with Georgia exports centered on frozen poultry and imports composed largely of perishables and apparel produced in Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Honduras. "Produce reaches consumers faster, fresher and cheaper through the Port of Savannah," GPA Board Chairman Jimmy Allgood said in a release. "That's good news for the folks who live in the Southeast, and perfectly complements Georgia's frozen poultry export market, increasing efficiency for our shipping line partners."
Savannah's Garden City Terminal already has a strong position in the outbound refrigerated market, handling 40 percent of all frozen poultry exported out of the U.S. Georgia's central location means carriers can travel shorter overland routes to reach inland markets, allowing time-sensitive cargo to reach stores in less time and lower cost, helping to improve shelf life and product quality, the port said.
Starting in June, Seaboard Marine will also offer a second weekly service for both northbound and southbound cargoes between Savannah and South America (Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru), South Central America (Costa Rica and Panama), and the Caribbean (Antigua, Aruba, Barbados, Bonaire, Curacao, the Dominican Republic, Grand Cayman, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Maarten, St. Kitts, Suriname and Trinidad).
"In addition to serving Georgia's poultry growers, Seaboard is tapping into an expanding market for fresh produce imports via Garden City Terminal," Georgia Ports Authority Executive Director Griff Lynch said in a release. "This is further proof that customers and carriers are discovering Savannah's competitive advantages for chilled cargo."
The Port of #Savannah welcomed its first Seaboard Marine vessel Wednesday. The new shipping line customer supports Savannah's cold chain #logistics system with one new service to Central America, and a second to Latin America and the Caribbean. Details: https://t.co/pLWwhIPjU0. pic.twitter.com/lwfj6j2njo— Georgia Ports (@GaPorts) May 9, 2019