Green Bay Port has tough year, but optimistic about future

Posted on Jan 12, 2011 :: Insight on Business, Web Exclusive.
Posted by of Insight Publications

It was another tough year for the Port of Green Bay in 2010 as the amount of cargo coming in decreased 4 percent from 2009’s totals.

In 2010, more than 1.7 million metric tons of cargo came through the port. Port Manager Dean Haen says a drop in commodities such as salt and cement were main factors resulting in the overall decrease.

Haen says the overall tonnage of salt imported in 2010 decreased by 133,000 metric tons when compared to 2009 numbers. “The tonnage numbers for salt in 2009 was high,” Haen says. “When you couple that with last year’s mild winter, in many cases inventories of salt didn’t need to be replenished. The reserves were already there.”

Haen says the Port has historically been a leading indicator of economic conditions for the region. “We ended 2010 with an 8 percent increase in domestic cargo, which may indicate that we will continue to see tonnage increase in 2011 as the economy continues to improve.”

Despite the decrease in 2010, Haen says there remains great growth potential for the shipping industry. U.S. Venture was recently added as a new terminal operator, bringing the total number of businesses on the port to 14.

“Things are heading in the right direction for 2011,” Haen says. “U.S. Venture will diversify the tonnage coming in and out of the port and will positively contribute to the annual tonnage numbers.”