PALMETTO — A nationwide corn shortfall is being partially plugged by importers that are shipping it in bulk through Port Manatee.
The latest ship with corn to dock at the port, in north Manatee County, is the 606-foot-long M/V Medi Segesta, according to a statement. The ship discharged more than 42,120 metric tons of corn from Argentina late last month, say port officials. The corn, the third South American shipment since November, will be used for animal feed, add officials, who say a domestic corn production shortage has caused a need for more imports. The previous two corn shipments that docked at Port Manatee were from Brazil.
“These corn shipments represent the flexibility our stevedores have in handling special commodities that are not handled at the port on a regular basis,” Port Manatee Executive Director Carlos Buqueras says in a statement. “We are continuing to pursue special commodities on a global scale that will stimulate local hiring and generate economic growth in our region.”
The corn is being off-loaded by clam bucket, according to the port. It's then deposited into hoppers and transported by truck to port warehouses or rail cars destined for Georgia and North Carolina.