PARANAGUA, BRAZIL — The Port of Paranaguá said this January it exported its highest volume since 1995 of soybeans, corn, wheat and sorghum meal, port officials said on Feb. 4.

Grain exports reached 984,100 tonnes, an increase of 0.13% from the 982,802 tonnes exported in 2014. In January 2013, the port exported 878,354 tonnes.

The corridor operated the entire month with only two berths due to the installation of two new ship loaders (shiploaders) - the system normally operates with three cots. In addition, more than 190 hours of rain was recorded at the Port of Paranaguá this January, which prevents the loading of ships.

"The Port of Paranaguá is a leading exporter of agricultural commodities ports of the country. We are working hard to improve our logistical procedures in order to enhance the flow and reduce bottlenecks. We move a lot," said Secretary of Infrastructure and Logistics Paraná, Jose Richa Son. “Thus, it is expected that the coming months will be even more productive. The third berth will restart at the end of February when the two new shiploaders will work.”

The new chargers have loading capacity of two tonnes per hour, about 30% more than the old shiploaders, which should reduce the interruptions times in the changes of the ships' holds up to 15%, said the Chief Executive Officer of the Administration of Paranaguá and Antonina Ports (Appa), Luiz Henrique Dividino.

The port also had record totals in December, when it exported more than 1 million tonnes of grain, a 54% increase from the prior year.

The growth was driven mainly by the increase in corn shipments. In January, the port exported 491,000 tonnes of grain. Earlier this year, the port discharged over 583,000 tonnes of maize, up 18.7%. Among the other products exported by the port were 61,700 tonnes of soybeans, 206,000 tonnes of meal and 132,000 tonnes of wheat.

The surge in exports can also be measured in the increased flow of trucks. The Paranaguá Port Screening Patio received in January, 21,200 truckloads of grain, 2.2% higher than in 2014. Even with the increased flow, the logistics system of receiving loads has worked smoothly and there were no queues at the port access.