After 40 years Chiquita returns to NOLA
Chiquita plans to ship 60,000 to 78,000 twenty-foot-equivalent units, or TEUs, per year at the Port of New Orleans, representing a roughly 15 percent increase in current container volumes there.
Chiquita’s shipping operations will return to New Orleans after a nearly 40-year hiatus. The company, known as United Brands in the 1970s, relocated its shipping operations from the Port of New Orleans to the Port of Gulfport in the mid-1970s after more than seven decades of calling at the Port of New Orleans. An LSU economic impact study suggests the project will result in approximately 270 to 350 new permanent jobs in New Orleans - based upon the range of TEUs shipped - as well as an increase in total economic output of $373 million to $485 million over the next 10 years.
Chiquita plans to ship 30,000 to 39,000 TEUs of bananas and other fresh fruit into the Port of New Orleans, as well as 30,000 to 39,000 TEUs of various outbound cargos. Company shipments in New Orleans are expected to begin by the first quarter of 2015.
The project will strengthen both the state’s and the New Orleans port’s ties to Central America. It will result in improved ocean transportation to those countries, and it helps further establish New Orleans as one of the premier ports for handling temperature-sensitive cargo. Additionally, the new ocean service will benefit shippers looking to export more cargo to Central America. ■