Karl's Feed
Mar 26, 2013

In rare move, Argentine corn heads to United States

BUENOS AIRES/CHICAGO, March 26 (Reuters) – The first
shipment of Argentine corn to the United States this year is on
its way with more to follow, marking an increase in orders from
the South American country to the world’s top corn producer as
it recovers from drought, traders said on Tuesday.

The United States usually imports small amounts of the grain
each year, mostly from Canada. Cargos from faraway Argentina are
rare. It sent less than 72,000 tonnes of corn to the United
States in 2012, about the amount than can fit in one large ship.

Mar 25, 2013

Labor talks at U.S. Northwest grain ports stall

March 25 (Reuters) – Contract talks between a group of U.S.
Pacific Northwest grain exporters and a dockworkers’ union
remained stalemated on Monday after the first bargaining session
in three months, aided by a federal mediator, broke down on
Friday.

A second meeting scheduled for Saturday was canceled.

No further talks were scheduled between the International
Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and three of the four grain
companies in the Pacific Northwest Grain Handlers Association:
United Grain, Louis Dreyfus and Columbia Grain.

Mar 19, 2013

Canadian corn exports to drought-hit U.S. seen reaching 1 mln T

WINNIPEG, Manitoba/CHICAGO, March 19 (Reuters) – Canadian
corn is flowing to U.S. ethanol plants and feed suppliers in
larger than usual volumes, with up to 1 million tonnes expected
in 2012/13, as a large Ontario crop backfills demand after last
year’s severe U.S. drought.

Canada is normally a net importer of corn, feeding Eastern
Canada’s pigs and poultry and supplying Ontario ethanol plants.
But the worst U.S. drought in more than 50 years has forced corn
buyers to look north.

Mar 5, 2013

Union files unfair labor charge over United Grain lockout

March 5 (Reuters) – The International Longshore and
Warehouse Union (ILWU) filed an unfair labor practice charge
against United Grain Corp (UGC) after its members were locked
out of the company’s Vancouver, Washington, grain export
terminal last week.

The charge was filed with the U.S. National Labor Relations
Board by ILWU Local 4 on Monday.

Feb 27, 2013

United Grain locks out union labor from U.S. PNW grain terminal

Feb 27 (Reuters) – United Grain Corp (UGC) on Wednesday
locked out union workers from its Port of Vancouver grain export
terminal in the U.S. Pacific Northwest after an investigation
unearthed evidence that a union leader sabotaged equipment
there, a spokesman for the grain company said.

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU)
disputed the charge and said the lockout was a response to the
union’s recent contract agreement with a competing grain
company.

Feb 1, 2013

Mississippi River barge backup shrinks, oil cleanup continues

Feb 1 (Reuters) – Mississippi River barge traffic remained
congested on Friday near Vicksburg, Mississippi, where a barge
accident and oil spill shuttered the major shipping artery on
Sunday, but the backlog of boats was slowly declining.

The U.S. Coast Guard reopened the river on Wednesday to
one-way traffic through a 16-mile safety zone from river mile
marker 425 to 441, where the backlog of barges had ballooned to
more than 1,000.

Jan 30, 2013

Mississippi River barge backup tops 1,000 after oil spill

By Karl Plume

(Reuters) – More than 1,000 barges were backed up on the Mississippi River near Vicksburg, Mississippi, on Wednesday after a weekend barge accident and oil spill forced the closure of the major shipping artery, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

An 80,000-gallon tanker barge that struck a railroad bridge on Sunday continued to leak crude oil, but cleanup crews have deployed 2,800 feet of boom to contain the spill and airborne spotters have not detected any oil outside the containment area.

Jan 29, 2013

Rock clearing on drought-hit Mississippi River nears completion

By Karl Plume

(Reuters) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will begin removing riverbed rock obstructions from the Mississippi River near Grand Tower, Illinois, on Tuesday night in the final phase of a project aimed at keeping the drought-hit shipping artery open to barge traffic.

The river will be closed to navigation daily from midnight until noon between Grand Tower and Thebes, Illinois, 31 miles downriver, where the Corps has been blasting and removing rock pinnacles since mid-December, the Corps said on Tuesday.

Jan 28, 2013

More than 300 barges delayed by Mississippi River closure

By Karl Plume

(Reuters) – More than 300 barges were awaiting passage through a closed section of the Mississippi River near Vicksburg, Mississippi, on Monday, a day after two tanker barges struck a railroad bridge and one leaked an unknown amount of oil into the river.

The river was closed between river mile markers 425 and 441 and a queue of 12 northbound vessels containing 142 barges and 12 southbound vessels containing 162 barges was waiting to pass on Monday morning, Coast Guard spokesman Carlos Vega said.

Jan 23, 2013

Mississippi River barge traffic restored after lock repair

By Karl Plume

(Reuters) – Commercial shipping traffic on the Mississippi River north of St. Louis was restored late on Tuesday when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers completed emergency repairs to a lock gate damaged by a boat earlier in the day.

Army Corps spokesman Mike Petersen said on Wednesday that 15 barge tows containing 85 barges were waiting to pass through the lock at 9:30 a.m. CST (10.30 a.m. ET). He said a queue of 19 tows containing 142 barges had formed before the lock reopened at 9:00 p.m. on Tuesday.