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LA-LB ports hit by labor disputes

Welcome Back to Freight Forwarding Weekly!

Welcome to the latest edition of Freight Forwarding Weekly. This newsletter is written by an anthropomorphic shipping container (and a human named Michael, our chief news analyst).

Today’s newsletter is brought to you by our very own Global Freight Load Board. Some recent loads:

🔋 Brazil – Japan – Silver Oxide Batteries

🛍️ Xiamen, China – Oslo, Norway – LTL shipment, various products

🍽️ Jacksonville, FL, – St John, USVI – Container of Restaurant Equipment

🚗 Japan – Mauritius – Used car parts

🐔  New Orleans – Ghana – Container of frozen chicken

To get the latest cargo requests (and custom alerts for shipments that match your capabilities, sign at:


📈 BY THE NUMBERS: Important numbers impacting freight and logistics

⛽ Diesel: $4.098 / gal (⬇️ from $4.105 last week) – Source: EIA

✈️ Air Cargo Index (Feb ‘23): 184.4 (⬇️ from 190 in Jan ‘23) – Source: FRED

🚢 Global Container Index: $1,416 (⬇️ from $1,481 last week) – Source: Freightos

🌍🌎🌏TOP NEWS HEADLINES: LA-LB ports suffering over labor disputes (plus more)

🫣Workers stage walkout forcing ports of LA and Long Beach to shut down for 24 hrs

After another dismal month for volumes, the twin ports at Los Angeles and Long Beach are still facing headaches – this time, from ongoing labor negotiations between firms and the terminals represented by the Pacific Maritime Association and members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 13. Employers at the ports said that workers not showing up for work last Friday was a “concerted action to withhold labor” due to contract renegotiations still going awry. National Retail Federation’s senior vice president of government relations David French said in a recent statement that they are “monitoring the situation in California and has reiterated its concerns to the White House.” Mr. French added: “It is essential that the ongoing labor negotiations between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association are resolved immediately.” Our newsletter has previously covered labor negotiations in the past and will continue to track any future developments related to this event.

Read the coverage at Freight Waves // Home Textiles Today report // NRF press release

🤕Earnings call: Conagra setbacks contributing to canned food shortages

Food manufacturing giant Conagra Brands told investors in an April 5 earnings call that there is a shortage of canned food products. Conagra said that canned pasta, beans, chili, and its meat products are most notably impacted solely due to issues surrounding cans and supply chain issues. President and CEO Sean Connolly told analysts on the call that “the root causes have been largely resolved, and we expect volumes to rebound sequentially from here.” Conagra said that they found additional quality control errors with cans in its chili and beans business volume. Sean Connolly added that the company is recovering from “discrete supply chain disruptions.”

Supply Chain Dive report

📄Descartes: March 2023 saw container imports tracking at pre-pandemic levels

The Descartes Systems Group just released its April Global Shipping Report trending toward a significant increase in United States container import volumes in March 2023, over February. This means that the monthly trend line is aligned with pre-pandemic 2019 container volumes. It is March 2023 and container import volumes increased by 6.9 percent from February to over 1.8 mil TEUs. This is reportedly driven by gains at the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Descartes said that the surge is impacted by the Chinese Lunar Near Year in January 2023.

GCaptain reporting on the data

🎃Norfolk Southern facing resident lawsuits due to East Palestine derailment in Feb

Norfolk Southern is now facing a set of 31 lawsuits in a Youngstown federal court. A U.S. federal judge ordered that all 31 lawsuits be consolidated, representing over 100 residents and a dozen of businesses in the victimized village. The first lawsuit was filed on February 7, 2023, four days after the derailment incident. These cases don’t include lawsuits filed by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Ohio attorney general’s office alleging violations of state and federal safety laws.

Read the story Cleveland.com

🔝Port of Laredo busiest U.S. international point of entry – all over the country

The Port of Laredo, Texas, jumped from just being the number 1 inland port in the United States to be the country’s busiest international trade port overall – beating other international ports of entry in Los Angeles and Chicago. Data from the Census Bureau shows that the city reached the number 1 spot among the 450 international ports of entry for trade in the month of February. This new distinction comes after Laredo fell down to third for the first time since February 2020. Chicago O’Hare Int’l Airport cargo terminals landed second and reported $22.8 billion in trade. Port of LA ranked number three with $17.2 billion. Laredo calculated $24.6 billion in two-way trade and commerce from Mexico – the U.S. country’s second-largest trading partner in North America – representing the majority of that trade. Laredo’s economy has huge ties to Mexico.

Transport Topics with the scoop

⚠️Other stories that are important…because they are…so read them…⚠️

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Freight Forwarding Weekly’s chief news analyst Michael McGrady reports this awesome weekly newsletter. Do you have a tip? Feedback? Email us: michael@freightforwarderservices.com.