Halstrom: Ocean Shipping Reform Act Great News For Beef Exporters

The U.S. Meat Export Federation is applauding the House of Representatives after passing the Ocean Shipping Reform Act, which looks to make it easier for American Ag products to find a ride to overseas destinations. While red meat exports are on a record pace this year, USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom said shipping delays and obstacles remain a major concern for exporters and their customers.

“This is a huge step in the right direction in terms of enforceability of some of these booking contracts for our exporters.  Kudos to the House, kudos the agricultural groups on Capitol Hill that made this happen.  Combine with expanded hours of service, maybe some waivers on over the road weight limits, these things will add up and hopefully start to turn the tide where to can get caught up on some of these shipments.”

Halstrom said he feels this legislation will help shippers to further prioritize exports. He noted the key is making sure those overseas customers are happy.

“We have one of the best reputations in the world, the U.S. does, on shipping our product overseas.  But a lot of this product is chilled, not frozen so there are shelf-life concerns, and more importantly there’s demands that this product arrive on time in a specific week.”

Halstrom noted several of the chilled value-added programs are at risk if the slowdowns and bottlenecks are no alleviated soon.

The Ocean Shipping Reform Act now moves to the Senate.

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