Agriculture to benefit from Port of Monroe improvements

The Michigan Soybean Committee expects a new maritime container terminal on Lake Erie to move more agricultural goods through the St. Lawerence Seaway.

Demand specialist Hanna Campbell tells Brownfield a federal port infrastructure grant for the Port of Monroe, located between Detroit and Toledo, will increase export efficiencies.

“The Saint Lawrence Seaway is extremely underutilized, only about 50 percent utilization on that shipping way,” she says. “Being able to just increase the diversity of the way that we’re able to export our goods is always a great thing for our farmers.”

Campbell says specialty products that are shipped in containers, like non-GMO and tofu soybeans, will directly benefit from the new facility.

“Those are mostly shipped by container at this point anyway,” she says. “A lot of them actually leave through Canada, so being able to utilize our Great Lakes shipping out the Saint Lawrence Seaway is just even more efficient to ship those specialty products to the export market.”

She says the project has increased the Port’s collaboration with the ag sector.

“Making sure they understand how agriculture is a little bit different than shipping some other products and what it looks like to make this facility conducive to agricultural shipping,” she shares. “That way when it’s built, ag can hopefully just immediately get involved and take advantage.”

More than $30 million in funding is currently being invested in the Port through a series of projects, the largest infrastructure investment since it was built.

AUDIO: Hanna Campbell, Michigan Soybean Committee

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