WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A new addition to the Port of Wilmington could save producers money and bring new business to the port.
Officials announced the opening of the Port of Wilmington Cold Storage facility Monday.
Chuck McCarthy, company president, said the 101,000 square feet facility has spaces for 10,600 pallets.
McCarthy predicts at full operation with as much as 20 million pounds of product turning eight to 10 times per year.
Most of the products stored inside the facility are frozen foods and meats, but also pharmaceuticals and ingredients for cosmetics.
Hanjin Shipping's declaration of bankruptcy in August was a setback since the facility had only been open for a week.
"A lot of food products that are exported go to Asia," McCarthy said. "Hanjin was the only Asian line pulling out of Wilmington. So there was a lull there for several weeks which kind of hurt our production here. But when Maersk came in and took over it really got the phones ringing again and helped us out."
McCarthy said the location of the facility at the port would cut transportation mileage and costs for producers and farmers.
The company hopes to attract more local and regional producers who may have previously gone to neighboring states' ports for cold storage availability.