Industry Group Offers Guidelines for Produce Shippers
The North American Produce Transportation Working Group (NAPTWG) has created best practices guidelines for produce shippers and carriers, which is endorsed by the Blue Book and the Dispute Resolution Corporation and available for download at www.naptwg.org.
According to the industry group, “The document integrates multiple existing transportation guidelines into one best practices documents, which can be used throughout North America to ensure the ongoing vitality of the carrier sector.”
The NAPTWG is comprised of more than 25 national and regional produce industry associations, transportation service providers, grower/shippers, and perishable receivers. In cooperation with United Fresh Produce Association, NATWG works to provide best practice resources to those involved in the fresh produce supply chain. C.H. Robinson Worldwide, Dole Food Company, and The Oppenheimer Group are among those companies that endorse the best practices of the NAPTWG.
Logistics Company Signs Up for Ryder’s Flex-to-Green Lease Program
Ryder System, Inc. has inked its first Flex-to-Green lease agreement with Source Interlink, a publishing and logistics company.
Under the agreement, Ryder will provide Source Interlink with a flexible option to exchange diesel vehicles for natural gas-powered vehicles.
Last September, Ryder launched its Flex-to-Green lease offering to support sustainable transportation for private fleet operators. The lease offering involves the incorporation of fuel-efficient vehicles into customers’ fleets, including liquid natural gas and hybrid vehicles. The deal provides customers with an opportunity to convert their conventional vehicles to new fuel-efficient ones.
Ryder’s alternative fuel fleet includes compressed and liquid natural gas vehicles, which are offered in certain markets in California, Arizona, and Michigan, as well as hybrid vehicles, which are available in most U.S. markets.
The company became the first fleet provider to offer heavy-duty natural gas vehicles for the leasing and rental industry through a groundbreaking natural gas vehicle project with the San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) in Southern California.
Pressure Building to Raise Weight Limits Near Port of Houston
Texas lawmakers are under increased pressure from companies operating near the Port of Houston to raise truck weight limits beyond 80,000 pounds to accommodate freight transportation between the port and surrounding companies, such as New Orleans Cold Storage.
Jim Henderson, an executive with New Orleans Cold Storage, says the current weight limits no longer reflect the “global standard.” According to Henderson, “South Carolina just changed theirs, and they were behind Houston. Houston is the last place where they have not updated the laws to react to the global standard.”
Most other international ports have 100,000 pound weight limits, he says.
Currently, if cargo offloaded from a vessel weights more than 80,000 pounds, it has to be broken into separate loads before trucks can transport it to a local warehouse, which is typically about 5 miles form the marine terminal.
Changing the weight limits would require legislative action. Alternatively, Texas lawmakers could create a permitting process, as they did at the Port of Brownsville.
EU’s Emissions Scheme Angering Air Cargo Sector
A number of foreign governments along with air carriers opposed to the European Union’s new ruling on carbon emissions have discussed the possibility of retaliatory action against the scheme, which threatens to add more cost to air cargo shipments.
The proposal makes it mandatory for air carriers operating in the EU to buy carbon credits equivalent to the carbon dioxide emitted by their aircraft, effective January 2012.
Air carriers will be charged on an annual accumulated basis.
The EU’s scheme has come under fire by various governments, who complain that it is unfair to unilaterally impose a tax without taking the consent of the rest of the world, making the move inconsistent with international law.