Biden’s Bottleneck Breakthrough: how the administration looks to get ag moving amid shipping crisis

Ag products may start flowing more smoothly through the largest American port. Now the White House hopes to reduce the supply chain bottleneck.

The White House has announced a new agreement to keep the Port of Los Angeles operating 24/7. President Joe Biden says that the decision comes after weeks of negotiations with port operators, unions, and the private sector.

“By staying open seven days a week, through the night, and on the weekends, the Port of Los Angeles will open over 60 extra hours a week will be open. In total, that will almost double the number of hours that the port is open for business from earlier this year. That means an increase in the hours for workers to be moving cargo off ships onto trucks and rail cars to get to their destination,” the President stated.

Ports have traditionally only operated during day shifts Monday through Friday, but Biden says that the International Longshore and Warehouse Union members have agreed to take on the extra shifts.

According to Biden, “The night hours are critical for increasing the movement of goods because highways, highways are less crowded by night. In fact, during off peak hours in Los Angeles cargo leaves the port at a 25 percent faster pace than during the day shift.”

As part of the agreement, the private sector will also be making adjustments to their truck and rail shipments that travel to and from the ports.

“FedEx and UPS, two of our nation’s biggest freight movers, are committing today to significantly increase the amount of goods they’re moving at night,” he noted. “FedEx and UPS are the shippers for some of our nation’s largest stores, but they’re also shipped for tens of thousands of small businesses all across America. Their commitment to go all in on 24/7 operations means that businesses of all sizes will get their goods on shelves faster and more reliably.”

President Biden says that strengthening the supply chain will continue to be a top priority for the White House.

“If federal support is needed I will direct all appropriate action, and if the private sector doesn’t step up, we’re going to call them out and ask them to act because our goal is not only to get through this immediate bottleneck, but to address the long standing weakness in our transportation supply chain that this pandemic has exposed,” Biden adds.

Biden also pointed to proposed funding in the bipartisan infrastructure package, as a much needed investment in transportation and port capacity.


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