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Thunder Bay grain shipments keep flowing

The grain surge continues on Thunder Bay ’s waterfront.
The grain surge continues on Thunder Bay’s waterfront.

The grain surge continues on Thunder Bay’s waterfront.

A long winter with record ice conditions on the Great Lakes has meant grain movers and shakers are playing catch-up as last year’s record harvest from Western Canada is still making its way to market.

In a July 2 release, the port authority reports grain shipments to date are up 35 per cent over 2013 and 18 per cent over the five-year average.

The port experienced its second consecutive month of “very strong” grain activity during June with 965,000 tonnes of grain loaded onto outbound vessels during the month compared to 386,741 tonnes in June, 2013.

It’s the port’s strongest June in 17 years.

Vessel calls were also up with 48 Great Lakes freighters and saltwater ships arriving in Thunder Bay in June compared to 23 during the same period last year.

When potash and dry bulk commodities are factored in, the port’s overall monthly tonnage surpassed one million tonnes for the second month in a row. The last time that happened was in 2001.

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