ABP to boost Southampton facility for banana imports

PUBLISHED : Friday, 13 November, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 13 November, 1998, 12:00am

Associated British Ports (ABP), Britain's largest port operator, reached agreement with Fyffes Group and Geest Bananas to allow them to consolidate banana import operations at Southampton from next year.

Geest already operates at Southampton's Windward Terminal, which is to be extended by ABP to accommodate the additional fresh produce from Fyffes.

Andrew Smith, an ABP director, said: 'We have had an excellent working relationship with Geest for many years and are very pleased now to welcome Fyffes to Southampton from next year.' He said the new facilities would enable Fyffes and Geest to provide swift transfer of fresh produce to ripening centres and customers.

About 450,000 tonnes of imported fruit and outbound cargo is expected to flow through the port annually.

The terminal area is to be increased to 4.5 hectares and a covered transfer facility of 600 square metres added.

A drive-through racking system will be introduced to increase capacity substantially in the two existing cool stores, and the banana inspection facility extended.

The terminal quay length will be increased to more than 370 metres and the new facilities will be supported by quayside cranes.

The extension is due to be completed in July and will involve the demolition of warehousing at 102 Berth.

The Windward Terminal was built by ABP in 1993 at 101 Berth in Southampton's Western Docks, with 5,500 square metres of temperature-controlled storage.