Monday, 26 September 2011

Common Bulk Cargoes

When a layperson glances at a modern Bill of Lading from a bulk carrier they often ask what cargo is being carried. This is because in order to avoid claims or delivery disputes, the Bills are very specific about exactly what is being carried, rather than using an understandable description. Here is a short guide, which like all our articles we will expand on over time, to the real-world meanings of common cargoes listed as being carried.


FAME - Fatty Acid Methyl Esther - These are basically fatty acids (types of energy-rich acid taken from animal fats, vegetable oils), mixed with a pure alcohol (methanol) so they can be stored in a concentrated liquid form. They can readily be stored and transported and the ship's tanks can be relatively easily be cleaned after discharge. The exact quality and type is very important as the type of use and value can vary greatly. Some FAME cargoes may be used at destination for creating food products, face creams or tablets; it would be very important that such a cargo was not contaminated. But equally you could have a shipment of FAME which was old grease and oils collected from restaurants, and other sources, being transported for use as biodiesel (natural diesel) - this would be less valuable. FAME is a very common cargo in modern shipping because of its wide array of applications.

Swarf - metal scraps - This is one of those old words which has stuck in industrial use for want of a better replacement. Swarf used to refer to little bits of metal which fell on the floor whilst you were cutting or working with metal. They used to be of concern primarily as a safety hazard, because even a very thin slice of scrap metal lying on a floor or bench can be a real danger but today with the market price of all metals soaring they are better known as bulk shipments where scrap metal of all kinds is mixed together for shipment to scrapyards for melting down. Sometimes a shipment will just literally be a load of mixed scraps of all kinds (shavings, taps, pipes, cable) and sometimes it will be solid compressed blocks of such scrap. Sometimes you will see basic sorting processes having taken place, lke a designation 'Swarf - 25 MT honey'. This is a reference to scrap of a yellow and gold colour which has been piled together for melting down, as opposed to another lot of scrap madeup of grey metals.


metal cutting services 26 April 2012 at 00:41  

That's a lot of metal scraps!

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