The Bellingham Shipping Terminal is set to receive its first regular cargo shipment in more than 17 years. A shipment of 10,700 metric tons of organic corn and soybeans, destined for local markets, will be arriving on Sept. 28.
The port has recently made major investments to the shipping terminal to encourage new business. At its last meeting, the Port Commission authroized a rental agreement, with the option to purchase, equipment necessary to load and unload grain and other bulk commodities. This summer, the port completed a $500,000 project to replace the roof and warehouse 2, allowing the facility to be certified for the storage or organic grains. Other recent improvements include a new bulkhead, up-to-date stormwater and power systems and the clean-up of historic contamination from the Whatcom Waterway.
The shipment will arrive on a 590-foot MV Diana Bolten. Workers from longshore union ILWU will offload the corn and soybeans for temporary storage in the shipping terminal warehouses, and Sunrise Foods will distribute them to producers in northwest Washington and southern British Columbia for use as animal feed.
The shipment is coming from Turkey, one of the largest exporters of organic products to the United States. The MV Diana Bolten is currently in the North Atlantic Ocean, and is scheduled to enter the Panama Canal around Sept. 12.