New King Island shipping arrangements have started, while big Tasmanian logistics company SeaRoad has continued its growth push.
The state-owned John Duigan has ceased taking King Island freight to Victoria and is concentrating on the King Island-Devonport route.
SeaRoad will take King Island cargo from Devonport to Melbourne on its much bigger freighters, SeaRoad Mersey II and Liekut.
The East Devonport-based company has started its weekly Devonport-Melbourne trans-shipping service for John Duigan operator Bass Island Line.
Regular John Duigan livestock shipments from King Island to Devonport have resumed.
SeaRoad executive chairman Chas Kelly said its bid for the tender was successful because it provided a seamless and efficient solution.
"With Bass Island Line sailing to West Devonport, partnering with SeaRoad provides a financially sustainable option for its operator, TasPorts, and meets customer demand for a Devonport call," Mr Kelly said.
"We look forward to delivering the high standard of service for which SeaRoad is known and enabling local businesses, such as renowned King Island food brands, to meet their operational demands."
SeaRoad expected to transport about 20 TEUs (twenty-foot equivalent units) per week for Bass Island Line.
Mr Kelly said the deal supported SeaRoad's growth strategy.
He said it followed more than 18 months of significant infrastructure and equipment investment in Devonport and Port Melbourne and the announcement of a new-build vessel due for completion in late 2023.
"Most recently, SeaRoad purchased four new Konecranes forklifts from 100 per cent Tasmanian-owned company United Equipment Pty Ltd, with the units valued at approximately $2.5 million," SeaRoad said.
Mr Kelly said SeaRoad was proud to support local industry.
State Transport Minister Michael Ferguson said the livestock shipment unloaded at the new $2.4 million roll-on, roll-off ramp in Devonport marked a new era for King Island shipping.
"The island community, through the King Island Shipping Group, identified Devonport as its preferred mainland Tasmanian port and TasPorts has invested in the infrastructure to deliver this service," Mr Ferguson said.
"Bass Island Line, a subsidiary of TasPorts, has not carried livestock since 2019, with all livestock to and from King Island since then being carried by an alternative operator.
"I am pleased that TasPorts has worked with the King Island community to deliver this service, which I am confident will be well supported, including by the vital primary industry sector that underpins the King Island economy.
"The Devonport RORO ramp will provide an efficient and secure supply chain solution connecting King Island to mainland Tasmania, while enabling access to trans-shipment options to Victoria through the Port of Devonport.
"The sailing followed a special livestock service requested by Longford-based beef processor JBS last week after a COVID-19 related interruption to an alternative shipping service."
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