Trans-Pacific carriers announced proposed rate increases of $300 to $400 per 40-foot container unit, effective July 1, on shipments of frozen and chilled beef, pork and poultry shipments exported from the U.S. to Asia.
The Westbound Transpacific Stabilization Agreement, a discussion group of 10 carriers, announced the non-binding rate guidelines for the so-called protein cargoes.
Protein shipments moving from West Coast ports to Asia would take a $300 per FEU increase, while intermodal shipments and cargoes moving via all-water services from East Coast ports to Asia would take a $400 increase if the carriers implement the proposed rate hikes. Also, rates for hides would increase $100 from all locations.
The WTSA is a discussion agreement. It has no enforcement powers and its guidelines are voluntary, but the WTSA announcements generally reflect market conditions in the westbound Pacific trade.
Brian Conrad, WTSA executive administrator, said Asian demand for chilled and frozen meat is strong. Also, the westbound Pacific is competing with other trade lanes for a limited supply of refrigerated equipment, especially temperature-controlled containers for carrying chilled products.
Frozen and chilled meat products normally move under 12-month contracts that run from July 1 through June 30 of the next year, Conrad said.