MacAndrews offers ocean alternative to Spain’s fresh produce market
MacAndrews, the U.K. subsidiary of CMA CGM, has started a weekly short sea service to rival the estimated 60,000-plus reefer truck market moving fresh produce by road from Southern Spain to the United Kingdom.
The Reefer Xpress Service started on June 23 when the 300-TEU vessel Georg Mitchell departed Bilbao. The other ports on the rotation are Sheerness and Rotterdam. MacAndrews said it plans to upgrade the service to twice weekly next year.
The London-based carrier spent two years experimenting with the service to come up with a cost competitive, environmentally beneficial and reliable alternative to trucking. The service offers a four-day door-to-door service to the U.K. market and uses 45-foot high-cube pallet-wide reefer containers, which MacAndrews said match the loading capacity of trailers.
“With the focus now on the carbon footprint of every commodity moved, we are confident that the environmentally friendly aspects of this service will appeal to shippers such as supermarket chains,” said Geoff Smith, MacAndrews’ managing director. “The time has come for a seaborne alternative at a pallet rate equivalent to that offered by the overland service.”