Chilean Port Strike May Slash Winter Fruit Arrivals at U.S. Ports

Chilean Port Strike May Slash Winter Fruit Arrivals at U.S. Ports

144_4475Produce haulers truck a lot of imported fresh fruit from various U.S ports to destinations across America and into Canada.  The largest volume of imported fruit this time of year is from Chile, arriving at such U.S. ports as Philadelphia; Wilmington, NC; and Long Beach, CA.

However, at the Port of San Antonio, Chile, dockworkers have been on strike for the past week.  It’s gotten so tense that police special forces have intervened.

If some sort of solution to the strike isn’t resolved soon, your loading opportunities at U.S. ports will be significantly affected – in a negative way.  Chilean fruit arrivals reach a peak between now and stretching into March.

Information is somewhat sketcky, but demonstrations are persisting and shipments to the U.S. and elsewhere have been hindered by the strikes. Union representatives claim that the government has not honored a recent agreement, due to the stubbornness of a port connected company, which the unions says is unwilling to negotiate.

The second week of the strike would jeopardize the export of an estimated 1.5 million boxes of fresh fruit, worth an estimated $40 million.   Even more  losses are expected if the dispute remains unresolved.

It is estimated  that in February there would be 6 million-plus cases per week of fruit being loaded on boats at the port for export.   One union spokesman said of the situation, “this is war.”