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From Harvest to Port

From Harvest to Port


Grain is big business. Around 2.32 billion bushels are harvested in the U.S. each year generating around $80 billion in economic output. In Canada, prairie grain farmers export nearly $30 billion worth of grain annually to more than 100 countries around the world. More than 95 percent of those shipments are moved by rail.

CP moves more grain than any other commodity. It accounted for 25 percent of CP’s total freight revenue in 2016 and 55 percent of CP’s total bulk revenue. Successfully moving this commodity through the supply chain requires the collaboration of grain producers, handlers and shippers.

“Harvest is huge,” said Jeff Page, farm owner based in Strathmore, Alberta. “It’s extremely important to us. Harvest is the final be-all, end-all of the growing season.”

A successful harvest season requires the cooperation and coordination of every link in the grain supply chain, from the farmers gathering crops to vessel coordination at the ports. CP collaborates with grain customers, port coordinators and vessels to ensure we are moving grain as efficiently and effectively as possible.

Canada’s grain industry leader, Viterra, is not only one of CP’s biggest customers, but a true partner within the grain supply chain, working closely with CP to improve communications, increase efficiencies and create better fluidity of assets.

“Working with CP is essential for Viterra,” said Ryan Schroeder, Viterra Facility Operations Manager at the Indus, Alberta grain elevator. “It’s essential for both our businesses to move product and we’ve promoted a good relationship with CP. Growth has been continual, and although we’ve been challenged by cold winters and extensive crops, we have succeeded by modifying our practices and finding new ways to work around these situations.”

With the 2016/2017 crop season well underway, Canadian Pacific Magazine followed the grain supply chain from harvest to port to uncover how CP works to build the most efficient, collaborative and interconnected grain supply chain possible. This includes having the capacity and velocity to move North American grain so that the Canadian and U.S. economies can reap the maximum benefit.

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