Last week Young Brothers reported on its interisland cargo shipments for 2013 between Honolulu and the six neighbor island ports and the figures might surprise some people.
The smallest port in the state, Kaumalapau on Lanai, saw the greatest rise in volume for the 12-month period ending Dec. 31, 2013 with a 20.7 percent increase. The Kaunakakai harbor on Molokai saw a 7.2 percent increase over the year compared to 2012.
Overall, YB saw a 1.5 percent volume increase in 2013. At other ports around the state, Kahului, Maui increased its volume by 1.0 percent; Hilo, by 2.1 percent and Nawiliwili, Kauai, by 4.5 percent. Cargo volume dropped 4.7 percent at the Big Island port of Kawaihae.
Similarly, during the fourth quarter of 2013, the same five ports experienced cargo increases while volume fell at Kawaihae: Kahului volume rose by 1.0 percent; Hilo, by 3.2 percent; Nawiliwili, by 1.5 percent; Kaunakakai, by 11.5 percent; and Kaumalapau, by 21.5 percent. Kawaihae volume dropped 8.5 percent for the quarter.
With agricultural cargo, YB reported an overall increase of 4.2 percent for the year. This is slower than the 11.6 percent increase in agricultural products reported in 2012.
“Agricultural volume growth slowed in 2013 but still finished four points over last year, so it appears that demand for fresh produce remains strong,” said Glenn Hong, president of Young Brothers.
For the 12-month period ending Dec. 31, 2013, four ports increased agricultural exports: Kahului, by 9.4 percent; Kaunakakai, by 7.7 percent; Honolulu, by 5.7 percent; and Hilo, by 5.3 percent. Agricultural cargo from Nawiliwili fell by 16.5 percent, and from Kawaihae, by 7.2 percent.
During the 2013 fourth quarter, agricultural cargo exports declined at four of the six ports: Kahului, down 5.5 percent; Honolulu, down 4.1 percent; Kawaihae, down 2.9 percent; and Nawiliwili, down 1.1 percent. Conversely, agricultural cargo from Kaunakakai jumped 14.3 percent, while Hilo exports grew by 2.2 percent compared to the year-ago quarter.
Agricultural volume includes only cargo that qualifies for the company’s island product discount of 30 to 35 percent. The discount applies only to locally grown agricultural products.