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Shipping lines, union blame each other for West Coast port backups

















By: Reuters | Nov 12 2014 at 01:15 PM | Ports & Terminals








Tension over prolonged labor talks between maritime shippers and the union representing 20,000 West Coast dockworkers has erupted in public as the two sides blamed each other for escalating cargo congestion at the two busiest U.S. container ports.






14 freighters were anchored waiting for space to enter the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, where container cargo traffic has been backing up for about a month, delaying deliveries of last-minute holiday merchandise, port and retail officials said.





The number of cargo ships kept waiting outside the two ports ranged from about eight to 15 on any given day since the backups began around mid-October, said Phillip Sanfield, a spokesman for the Port of Los Angeles.




“On a normal day, we rarely have ships waiting at anchor unless they want to be there,”
he said.





Los Angeles and Long Beach rank as the nation’s No. 1 and 2 container ports by volume, together handling 43 percent of all containerized goods entering the United States.





The congestion crisis there comes as labor negotiations between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association, representing terminal operators and ocean carriers, have dragged on well past the June 30 expiration of the dockworkers’ latest contract.




Management has accused the union of orchestrating work slowdowns by its members, first at ports in the Pacific Northwest, and then at Los Angeles and Long Beach, to create leverage at the bargaining table.




Union officials acknowledge that individual dockworkers may be acting out their frustration over the pace of contract talks, but deny organizing protest delays. They point to other factors that port officials cite as the main reasons for gridlock.







Chief among them is a chronic shortage of tractor-trailer chassis used for hauling cargo containers out of the ports, a situation created when shipping lines decided to sell off their chassis to equipment leasing companies.





Union and port officials also cite the arrival of peak cargo season and record import levels, a shrinking labor pool among truckers, rail service delays and the advent of super-sized container vessels delivering greater cargo volumes that need to be unloaded all at once.





“It’s been kind of a perfect storm,”
Sanfield said.




Jonathan Gold, a vice president of the National Retail Federation, said retail stocking problems stemming from congestion at the ports would likely run into next year. (Reuters)


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India




Alphonso





Alphonso (mango)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia








Alphonso (हापुस Haapoos in Marathi, હાફુસ in Gujarati, ಆಪೂಸ್ Aapoos in Kannada) is a mango cultivar that is considered by many[who?] to be one of the best in terms of sweetness, richness and flavor. 


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It is also one of the most expensive kinds of mango and is grown mainly in Kokan region of western India.

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INDIA 2016 : Mango production in state likely to take a hit this year

TNN | May 22, 2016, 12.32 PM IST






Mangaluru: Vagaries of nature is expected to take a toll on the production of King of Fruits - Mango - in Karnataka this year. A combination of failure of pre-monsoon showers at the flowering and growth stage and spike in temperature in mango growing belt of the state is expected to limit the total production of mango to an estimated 12 lakh tonnes in the current season as against 14 lakh tonnes in the last calendar year.



However, the good news for fruit lovers is that this could see price of mangoes across varieties decrease marginally by 2-3%. This is mainly on account of 'import' of the fruit from other mango-growing states in India, said M Kamalakshi Rajanna, chairperson, Karnataka State Mango Development and Marketing Corporation Ltd.




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The earlier fossil records of mango (Mangifera indica) from the Northeast and elsewhere were 25 to 30 million years old. The 'carbonized leaf fossil' from Damalgiri area of Meghalaya hills, believed to be a mango tree from the peninsular India, was found by Dr R. C. Mehrotra, senior scientist, BSIP and his colleagues. 




After careful analysis of the fossil of the mango leaf and leaves of modern plants, the BISP scientist found many of the fossil leaf characters to be similar to mangifera.


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