CALGARY, ALBERTA, CANADA — As of the end of May, Canadian Pacific (CP) has moved 22.5 million tonnes of Canadian grain and grain products since the start of the 2018-19 crop year.
“Since August of last year, we have moved approximately 500,000 tonnes more grain than ever before, bettering our record at this time back in the 2015-2016 crop year,” said Joan Hardy, vice-president of sales and marketing, grain and fertilizers, at CP. “We continue to innovate in close collaboration with our customers and supply chain enablers, and we look forward to delivering for farmers and the North American economy as we close out this crop year and prepare for the next.”
CP moved 15 million tonnes of grain to Vancouver through the end of May, breaking the prior record set in the 2016-17 crop year by 5%. May was also a record month for grain products, not including whole grains, both from a carload and a volume perspective. April was an all-time record month for Canadian grain and grain products as CP moved 2.643 million tonnes, bettering the previous record from October 2018. In November 2018, the company broke its previous record for carloads of Western Canadian grain and grain products shipped to the Port of Vancouver in a single month, with 17,150.
CP now has over 1,000 new, high-capacity hopper cars in its fleet and at year’s end, more than 1,900 of the new hopper cars will be in service. The fleet will continue to grow in the years ahead, as part of CP’s $500 million commitment to invest in 5,900 of the new hopper cars. The company said shippers are able to load up to 10% more grain in these cars compared to the older, less efficient hopper cars they are replacing.
CP’s 8,500-foot High Efficiency Product (HEP) train model, announced last summer, is gaining traction. Construction is currently under way at five CP-served facilities, enabling them to start shipping under the HEP train model this fall, adding to the seven existing CP-served 8,500-foot loop track facilities. Four more 8,500-foot HEP-qualified facilities will be operating by the spring of 2020.
“By the spring of next year, 20% of CP’s unit train elevator network will be loading the highly-efficient 8,500-foot HEP trains, which, coupled with the new hopper cars, can move up to 44% more grain per train,” Hardy said. “Together with our customers, we are creating capacity and driving efficiencies in the grain supply chain. We look forward to welcoming many more 8,500-foot HEP train loading facilities in the years to come.”