Inland Terminal Speeds Freight to Rotterdam

Inland Terminal Speeds Freight to Rotterdam

The Alpherium Terminal opened Oct. 1 in the village of Alpen aan den Rijn, making it possible to ship Heineken beer and other products via barge instead of truck to the Port of Rotterdam.

Each day, four barges with a capacity of 85 20-foot equivalent container units shuttle Heineken beer to Rotterdam, mostly for export to the United States. The 200,000 TEU capacity terminal, built at a cost of $21 million, is one of the five largest of 30 Dutch hinterland terminals.

By The Numbers: Europe-North America Westbound Container Trade.

Trucks carry 200 boxes per day the 15 kilometers from the brewery to Alpherium, rather than directly to Rotterdam, cutting total mileage by around six million km per year and CO2 emissions by around 35 percent.

The Port of Rotterdam Authority leases the Alpherium terminal to the operator, the Van Uden Group. Similar arrangements have been made in Wanssum (North of Limburg). Another terminal lease is planned in Alblasserdam (east of Rotterdam). Other locations, in the Benelux, Germany and along the axis into Central Europe are being studied with an eye to making transport more sustainable by switching containers from road to inland shipping.

-- Contact Thomas L. Gallagher at