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CP, CN again post grain-haul records


Canadian Pacific and CN yesterday announced new records achieved in hauling Canadian grain during 2020.

CP moved 31.32 million metric tons (MMT) of Canadian grain and grain products in 2020, more than any prior calendar year in its history. Also, at year's end, CP completed its best quarter and best-ever December for hauling those commodities, company officials said in a press release.

In fourth-quarter 2020, CP moved 8.8 MMT of Canadian grain and grain products, which surpassed 2020's second quarter — the previous volume record — by 5.1%. December totals came in at 2.84 MMT, which beat the Class I's previous record set in 2019 by 13.6%.

"Hard-won achievements like these require commitment and focus across the supply chain, but special credit must go to CP's customers and their dedicated employees," said Joan Hardy, CP's vice president of sales and marketing grain and fertilizers. "Their work to create a safe, efficient supply chain is an essential ingredient for our ability to deliver Canada's crops to consumers at home and around the world."

CP is continuing to invest in its grain fleet with additional hopping cars entering service each week. The railroad has added more than 3,700 new hopper cars to its fleet. The high-efficiency units carry 15% more grain by volume and 10% more by weight compared to the older cars they're replacing, CP officials said.

Meanwhile, CN announced that in December, for the 10th consecutive month, the railroad set a new record by shipping over 2.84 MMT of Canadian grain and processed grain products via carload. That brings the volume of grain in the 2020-2021 crop year to date via carload to 14.5 MMT, exceeding the previous record pace volume by nearly 2 MMT, or over 15%, CN officials said in a press release.

CN also remains on record pace for containerized grain shipments from western Canada, they said.

"These record grain shipments are coming at the same time as CN is shipping very high volumes of many other commodities such as lumber, potash, propane and consumer goods," said Rob Reilly, CN's executive vice president and chief operating officer. "While we are proud of December's results, we do not take them for granted and we will continue to work hard to safely move our customers' goods."

CN officials attributed the company's success during a challenging year to its employees, supply chain partners and investments in track, locomotives and the purchase of 1,500 new high-capacity grain hopper cars.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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