Union Pacific and CSX to Introduce a New Produce Service in 2006
Omaha, Neb., August 2, 2005 Fresh Washington State produce will soon make its way to New York State aboard Union Pacific Railroad’s and CSX Transportation’s new dedicated produce unit train. The service, made available through agreements with Railex LLC, is scheduled to begin in first quarter 2006.
The 55-car train will consist of new refrigerated boxcars that can carry as much as four truckloads of produce each. The high-speed travel time – 124 hours – is achieved partly by keeping the train intact from its loading point until arrival as a “unit” at destination.
“We believe this new service will provide an alternative method to ship perishable produce from Washington to New York other than over-the-road transportation,” said John Philp, Union Pacific Railroad, assistant vice president - food and refrigerated products.
“We are very excited about this new service option for shippers of perishable goods, which will fill an existing transportation void by allowing for a fifth-morning arrival from Washington State to the Northeast,” said Andy Pollak, CEO and owner of AMPCO Distribution Services Management, LLC.
The refrigerated boxcars are a new generation of 64-foot railcars with enhanced insulation, energy efficient cooling systems and GPS monitoring to ensure proper temperature control. The unit train is designed to carry products such as apples, pears, onions and potatoes. In addition, this new service opens the gateway for a variety of other highly perishable commodities currently transported by truck. The train will provide Washington perishable shippers with both a high-speed and reliable transportation alternative while offering the cost savings that rail provides.
The train, originating in Wallula, Wash., and terminating in Albany, New York, is a joint service offering with CSX Transportation that will include a seamless interchange in Chicago. Railex, LLC, a division of AMPCO Distribution Services, will own and operate both new loading and unloading centers and will manage handling and distribution of product on each end.
Union Pacific Corporation owns one of America's leading transportation companies. Its principal operating company, Union Pacific Railroad, links 23 states in the western two-thirds of the country and serves the fastest-growing U.S. population centers. Union Pacific’s diversified business mix includes Agricultural Products, Automotive, Chemicals, Energy, Industrial Products and Intermodal. The railroad offers competitive long-haul routes from all major West Coast and Gulf Coast ports to eastern gateways. Union Pacific connects with Canada’s rail systems and is the only railroad serving all six major gateways to Mexico, making it North America’s premier rail franchise.
CSX Corporation, based in Jacksonville, Fla., owns companies providing rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services that are among the nation’s leading transportation companies, connecting 70 river, ocean and lake ports, as well as more than 230 shortline railroads. Its principal operating company, CSX Transportation Inc., operates the largest railroad in the eastern United States with a 22,000-mile rail network linking commercial markets in 23 states, the District of Columbia, and two Canadian provinces. CSX Intermodal, Inc. is a stand-alone integrated intermodal company serving customers with its own truck and terminal operations plus a dedicated domestic container fleet. More information about CSX Corporation and its subsidiaries is available at the company’s Web site, www.csx.com.
AMPCO Distribution Services and its affiliates is a national produce distribution firm established over 30 years ago, procuring and shipping produce domestically and importing produce year round for the retail and foodservice industries. The companies’ sales volume is in excess of 300 million dollars a year, and in addition has seven distribution facilities along the eastern seaboard from New Brunswick Canada to Florida. These distribution centers are designed for packing, re-packing, grading, warehousing, and freight forwarding a variety of produce commodities in order to accommodate the industry’s “just in time delivery” needs. AMPCO Distribution Services also operates various sourcing and buying offices throughout the United States and Canada and is respected for its innovation in both inventory management and product marketing. Railex, LLC, a division of AMPCO Distribution Services Management, LLC is ready to meet the challenging needs of transporting perishables across the country.
For further information, contact Mark Davis, Union Pacific, (402) 544-5459; Misty Skipper, CSX, (904) 359-1787; or Paul Esposito, AMPCO, (888) 896-1786.
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