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Port Manatee on Tampa Bay, Florida, logged 88,466 20-foot-equivalent units (TEUs) of cargo in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, representing a 54.6% increase over FY2019 and an all-time high, port officials announced yesterday.
In FY2019, Port Manatee posted 57,239 TEUs, a 49.2% increase compared with FY2018's level.
"With container throughput more than doubling over the course of just two years, Port Manatee is increasingly fulfilling regional consumer demands for goods ranging from fresh produce to appliances," said Executive Director Carlos Buqueras in a press release. "As our dockside container yard expansion project advances toward mid-2021 completion, Port Manatee is positioning to continue to efficiently handle rapidly growing cargo volumes."
The container trade is being driven by growth of Port Manatee-based World Direct Shipping, which has been importing produce and other goods from Mexico since 2014, and Del Monte Fresh Produce Co., which is in its fourth decade of bringing Latin American fruit to the port.
A container yard expansion is adding 9.3 acres to the existing 10-acre paved facility adjoining the port's Berth 12 and 14 docks. Port Manatee's short line, which connects to a CSX mainline, features nearly 7 miles of track and a 300-plus rail-car capacity.