Argus win-win award goes to Cedar Rapids & Iowa City Railway and Archer Daniels Midland
Houston, 25 May 2011
International energy reporting agency Argus has named the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Railway Company (CRANDIC) and Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) the winners of its Win-Win Award.
The two companies received their award today at the North American Rail Shippers Association Conference in San Francisco, California in front of almost 300 railroad representatives and their customers. This is the second time the Iowa shortline has won the award.
The annual honor is given to railroads, shippers and organizations that develop innovative partnerships leading to improved service, efficiency and other mutually beneficial service improvements. Launched in Argus Rail Business in 1998, the annual award celebrates partnerships between rail carriers and customers resulting in significant cost or service benefits. The latest award recognizes how both parties developed an innovative solution that allows the railroad to handle 35pc more carloads from ADM while giving the shipper more control over its railcar maintenance processes.
"The expansion is a Win-Win -- not just for ADM and the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City Railway -- but the community, crop producers, and the entire state of Iowa," Jeff Woods, the manager of marketing and business development for the railroad, said.
"They [CRANDIC] have proven time and time again their commitment to the highest level of service, and have been a steadfast partner in helping us meet the food and biofuel needs of the world," Jim Bobbit, ADM's director of North American rail operations, said.
ADM expanded its US ethanol capacity as demand for the oxygenate increased in the last few years, including building a $540mn dry grind ethanol plant along the CRANDIC route. The plant also ships distillers' dried grains manufactured during the ethanol production process by rail. The rails expansions to better serve the plant included nearly $1mn in investments by the parties during 2010 and nearly $9mn over the last three years to handle the 35pc increase in volumes through the plant.
As part of the project, the railroad improved two miles of rail line to handle unit trains of more than 100 railcars for the facility. CRANDIC also employed new mother and slug locomotive combinations to add tractive force to the shortline's switching fleet at the plant, while also reducing emissions. In addition, the use of systems to reduce idling of locomotives has furthered fuel efficiency gains and reduced emissions from the railroad's switchers serving the plant.
ADM is on pace to load 30,000 carloads through the facility in 2011 after starting production in the middle of 2010. A unique space of the partnership was how the shipper purchased a surplus railcar maintenance facility near its plant to handle inspection and repair requirements of its railcar fleet. ADM sought to own the facility, so CRANDIC fashioned a proposal that allowed the existing locomotive work to be relocated and the shop sold to ADM so the shipper could better maintain its railcar fleet. The shipper also received long-term service commitments from the shortline that provide it with cost and service certainty.
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Argus is a leading provider of price assessments, business intelligence and market data on the global crude and products, natural gas, coal, electricity, emissions and transportation industries. It is headquartered in London and has offices in Houston, Washington, New York, Portland, Calgary, Johannesburg, Dubai, Singapore, Tokyo, Beijing, Sydney, Moscow, Astana, Kiev, Santiago and other key centres of the energy industry. Argus was founded in 1970 and is a privately held UK-registered company.