Powering the supply chain – Peel Ports and CLdN introduce new Spanish / UK RoRo service

22 June 2020

European short sea Ro-Ro specialist CLdN have introduced a new call at the Port of Liverpool, opening the first pure RoRo service in a triangle trade between Santander (ES), Liverpool (UK) and Dublin (IE).

The new service will operate a weekly loop connecting Spain directly to the UK and Ireland. This will bring the total number of calls from Iberia to Liverpool to eight and will provide a new green RoRo alternative compared to other modes of transport, cutting down on excessive road and sea miles, by following the shortest, most direct route and avoiding the English Channel and long road trips.

Market uncertainty has presented a number of ongoing issues in the supply chain for business’s across the UK. This new route will be a vital solution to these issues to protect and preserve every link in the supply chain and deliver a robust and reliable service during these challenging times.

Supply chains are having to develop new models of working in response to the demands placed on them. COVID-19 has created a number of challenges as a result of a globalised system. Long distance European haulage is one such challenge in a post COVID-19 world and this new service removes this issue. Current supply chain models need to be modified for an agile business to succeed now and into the future.

Reduced turnaround times coupled with the added benefit of shortening the land journey to end destination will mean cargo, particularly perishable goods, will reach shelves quicker providing relief for stores under consumer pressure.

Delays as a result of increased paperwork and border controls are one of the biggest concerns for products grown or manufactured in mainland Europe and imported into the UK. Currently, more than 75% of all RoRo freight from ports on the near Continent passes through the English Channel versus pre-COVID-19, where 99% of it was accompanied. By using the CLdN service and the unaccompanied freight model, the current burden of restrictive measures put in place by authorities relating to driver or passengers transport is removed.

Mike Lewis, UK Sales Manager, CLdN said: “Having observed an increasing demand from trailer, container and project cargo operators for a direct connection from Iberia to the UK and Ireland in certain markets, we chose the Port of Liverpool to take advantage of the UK’s extensive port network as a viable alternative, with ports in the north able to offer hugely reduced waiting times, storage and efficient onward routes.

Shipments of fresh fruit and vegetables entered the UK from over 26 European countries, predominantly through ports in the south. The majority of items coming through are perishables with limited time before expiry, products like tomatoes and citrus from Spain and apples and pears from France. As it stands, the UK imports about 85% of its vegetables from the EU (ITC Trade Map).

David Huck, Managing Director at Peel Ports, said: “I am delighted that we are able to open up new trade opportunities amidst current market conditions. The impact of COVID-19 has served to accelerate a lot of change and we are seeing a purposeful shift to establish a flexible and adaptable supply chain in response to the needs of the market. It’s therefore important now more than ever the need towards more strategic relationships, a demand-driven and flexible supply chain.