French sugar trains via Basel and some recent freight news


yatton123
 

There are block trains of sugar between France and Italy via Basel.
Forwardis organise a service to Mantova Frassine for Tereos which originally (2017) came from the closed sugar refinery (used for storage) at Valleroy/Meaux. More recently Tereos'  Boiry sugar refinery at Boisleux has been used for loading.The service uses Paganella S.p.A 30' containers on single container flats. Initially the service was Touax 33 53 4557 Sgns wagons , later some Atir (ex TRW) 33 88 4552 9xx Sgnss were included. These two types still continue in use although at the end of last year some new Turkish built Atir 37 84 4552 Sgnss (hired by Forwardis) started to be used.Sometimes this service goes to Mortara.
A second set of trains for Cristal Union are operated by Mercitalia Intermodal S.p.A (Cemat) and run from the Arcis sur Aube and Sillery sugar refineries to two locations in Italy,Novara and Russi.These services use Intermodaltrasporti 30' containers. The wagons are a mixture of Cemat's own 33 83 4575 Sgnss and 33 83 4961/2 Sggmrss together with a mixed bag of AAEC (both 68 and 80) mainly 60' singles. 
The Russi site was previously owned by Eridania Italia S.p.A and in later years had an agreement with Tate & Lyle for packaging their sugar.This brought ex Rover 33 70 4739 wagons working through to Italy from Britain. Later Eridania was taken over by Cristal Union and the site is used for packaging French sugar. Part of the site is now used for a biomass plant owned by PowerCrop.
A couple of recent snippets of freight news are that Hupac have signed a co-operation agreement with Logtainer to increase rail container trains between the Ligurian ports and southern Germany. There is currently a service operated by PSA Genova Pra' S.p.A from Genova to Frenkendorf which is now well loaded. It started in Ocober 2018 but initially carried very few conainers (I saw one train with four containers).
A second note is that TxLogisticstarted a service from Bologna to Köln Nord in January.
The service is for semi trailers of P400 profile.From what I've seen on YouTube Arcese and Fercam are the main users at present.
SMET S.p.A. have said they are ''purchasing 300 new maxi-volume eco trailers from Real Trailer Krone Italia, with P400 profile which will enter the group's fleet from February 2021. " and that they want to use the service  - time (and YouTube) will tell.


csipromo
 

Is CEMAT still a joint venture between Mercitalia (Trenitalia Cargo) and Hupac?
Do you have more information about who will be operating the TX Logistics service (outside Italy) and whether it will be using the Brenner or Gotthard corridors?

Regards

Mike C


yatton123
 

The most recent Cemat wagons, Swiss registered (CH -Cemat) pocket wagon twins, carry the Mercitalia Intermodal logo. In January 2018 Cemat ,being part of the Mercitalia Group, was re-branded as Mercitalia Intermodal.
The TX Logistik service runs on the Gotthard route and is normally hauled by a Railpool 186 10x, although I saw one video with a Railpool 187 double heading a 186. From YouTube videos it looks like the 186 also works into Italy.


csipromo
 

I know that TXL had been using the former Crossrail 186 9XX which they had leased from SBB/Cargologic/BLS.
Under the Crossrail bankruptcy, they had gone to SBB Cargo, but were not needed, so they were leased to other operators.
SBB Cargo and BLS have agreed to use at least a few of the former Crossrail 186 to pull the RAlpin Rola trains between Weil am Rhein and Novara, freeing up the Re 485 for other uses and allowing BLS to retire a greater number of their Re 4/4 (425). Additional RAlpiin Rolas are still being pulled by Re 485, leaving the 486 and Vectrons to handle container traffic. BLS can additional still rely on some leased 186 1XX (Railpool) and may still have a few 187.

I don't know if TXL still has access to any of the ex-Crossrail 186 or whether they have had to lease additional locomotives.
TXL used to operate their own trains using leased ES64F4 and ES64U class locomotives from Dispolok and MRCE.

Regards

Mike C