Port of Hamilton sees record year for agricultural shipments

Agricultural shipments now make up 23 per cent of the Port of Hamilton's total, doubling since 2010.
Agricultural shipments now make up 23 per cent of the Port of Hamilton's total, doubling since 2010. Hamilton Port Authority

The president and CEO of the Hamilton Port Authority says it speaks to the successful diversification of the city’s economy.

Ian Hamilton notes that the port handled 2.3-million metric tonnes of shipments for the agri-food sector in 2017, the highest-ever total of commodities like corn, wheat and soybeans, as well as canola, sugar, potash and other fertilizers.

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Hamilton adds that agricultural cargo has almost doubled by percentage since 2010, and now accounts for close to one-quarter of total shipments through the Port of Hamilton.

He also notes that the port authority now has 14 tenants in the agri-food sector, and they are working “hand in hand with the city” to grow that cluster.

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Hamilton stresses that “substantial” investments in recent years totalling more than $200 million have included G3 Canada’s $50-million grain export terminal and Parrish and Heimbacker’s $45-million flour mill.

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Overall, the port’s tonnage increased by six per cent last year to 9.86-million metric tonnes.

Hamilton anticipates growth will continue in 2018 as “Stelco by accounts will continue to ramp up,” ArcelorMittal Dofasco “will be successful as they always have been,” and he adds that “just now, we’re starting to get all of our facilities rolling at full capacity” in the agricultural sector.

2017 Highlights
Steel-making 6,174,038 MT
Finished steel 622,263 MT
Agricultural 2,292,872 MT
Liquid bulk 275,208 MT
Aggregates 304,377 MT
Other 200,901 MT
TOTAL CARGO 9,869,660 MT
Vessels 603
(152 overseas; 451 domestic/US)

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