A cadre of ocean carriers are charging exorbitant, potentially illegal, fees on shipping containers stuck because of congestion at ports. Sellers of furniture, coconut water, even kids’ potties say the fees are inflating costs.
An article in gCaptain reports the entire story.
No containerships for banana transport
Last fall, a company called One Banana loaded 600,000 pounds of the fruit from its plantations in Guatemala and Ecuador onto ships bound for the Port of Long Beach in California. Once they arrived, the bananas, packed in refrigerated containers, were offloaded by cranes for trucking to a nearby warehouse, where the fruit would be sent to supermarkets nationwide.
But in the midst of a global supply chain crisis, none of the trucking companies the importer normally worked with were willing to come and get the containers.
As the bananas sat at the marine terminal, a logistics specialist for One Banana scrambled, contacting more than a dozen trucking firms.
With each passing hour, the bananas grew closer to spoiling. “We need to pull out 15 containers from Long Beach Port,” the logistics specialist wrote in an email to one firm. “Please let me know if you could help me with this.”
A trucking company finally said it could — but only if One Banana first paid $12,000 per container on top of already higher transportation costs.
Did you subscribe to our daily Newsletter?
It’s Free! Click here to Subscribe