Rice being loaded onto vessel at Port of Ipswich. Image credit: Stephen Waller
ABP’s Port of Ipswich has retained its place as the number one export port for agricultural products for the 18th year in a row, beating London, Bristol and Great Yarmouth to claim the title.
This was confirmed by the Department for Transport’s recently published UK port freight statistics, reporting that the Port of Ipswich exported 631,000 tonnes of agricultural commodities in 2022, 23% of UK major ports’ market share of agricultural products export tonnage last year.
The Port of Ipswich’s performance reflects its key location at the heart of the Suffolk and North Essex agricultural community, and the role of the region as the ‘breadbasket’ of the UK.
In addition to holding the accolade of being the biggest exporter of agricultural products, ABP’s Port of Ipswich was also the UK’s fifth most important port for total agricultural traffic in 2022, handling 773,000 tonnes of agricultural commodities.
As well as agricultural products the port handles a range of other products such as fertiliser, cement and aggregates.
Paul Ager, Divisional Port Manager for ABP, said:
“It’s fantastic that we have seen continuously high agricultural export volumes, which have helped our port retain its top position as the UK’s number one export port for agricultural products.
“Our business plays an important role in supporting supply chains in East Anglia, and keeping agricultural products moving in support of local businesses and farmers in the region.
“We are looking forward to maintaining this position for 2023 as we’ve had a record-breaking 2023 so far, having announced at the end of May 2023 that the port handled over 1 million tonnes of exports and imports since the start of the year – the first time the port has supported over 1 million tonnes of various products.
“We are grateful to all our customers for continuing to choose ABP’s Port of Ipswich to handle their imports and exports.”
Julian Scott, General Manager, Clarksons Port Services – Sentinel Terminal, said:
“Following on from a successful 2022, we’ve also seen a very good start to 2023. Harvesting this season is having it challenges for farmers, compared to last season, with weather delays, however, grain quality in Suffolk and the surrounding counties is remaining good. We are now well into the harvest season with exports continuing, and with a few more dry days most of the wheat and barley harvesting in this region will be completed by this weekend. At the terminal we are looking forward to a busy programme of exports for the remainder of the year.”
“Clarksons enjoys a close working relationship with ABP, and their provision of excellent facilities means we can continue to provide a first-class service to all our customers.”
ABP has recently marked 25 years of its ownership of the port, as well as the tenure of Clarkson’s Port Services (CPS) at the port’s Sentinel Terminal. In those 25 years, the port has celebrated a number of milestones, including becoming the UK’s number one grain export port, which it has remained as every year since 2005. ABP has also invested £49.6m in the port since 2012 and handled 68.4 million tonnes of cargo between 1997 and 2022.