According to a soybean-checkoff-funded study, 42% of soybeans transported by rail resulted in rates the U.S. Surface Transportation Board would classify as potentially excessive, resulting in $120 million in potential overcharges in 2007.
The Soy Transportation Coalition (STC), a partnership of United Soybean Board and seven state soybean checkoff boards, published the “Railroad Movement of Soybeans and Soy Products” study, which analyzes the volume of soy transported by rail, the most common rail destinations for soy and rates and revenue the railroad industry realizes from shipping soy. Other findings include:
The revenue the largest Class I railroads generated from transporting soy nearly tripled in 10 years, jumping to more than $1.5 billion in 2008 from $549 million in 1998.
Ports in Washington state and Oregon represent the largest destination area for U.S. soy, shipping 48% of the total U.S. crop. Most of the soy that is bound for Asia ships through the Pacific Northwest.
Log on to the “Library” section at www.unitedsoybean.org to view the full study.