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Borderlands: Mexico recorded 237 cargo thefts the first 2 months of 2023

Borderlands is a weekly rundown of developments in the world of U.S.-Mexico cross-border trucking and trade. This week: Mexico recorded 237 cargo thefts the first two months of 2023; Port of Lazaro Cardenas will receive a $322 million investment; Penske Logistics is laying off 152 workers in Fort Worth; and a Texas contract manufacturer expands its logistics facility and trucking fleet. 

Mexico recorded 237 cargo thefts the first 2 months of 2023

Cargo theft continued to be an issue across Mexico’s roadways during the first two months of the year.

Freight crimes across the country totaled 237 cases, with 129 incidents in January and 108 in February, according to Mexico’s National Association of Vehicle Tracking and Protection Companies (ANERPV). 

The total number of cargo thefts during the first two months of 2023 represented a 29% decline compared to the total robberies in the first two months of 2022. 

David Roman, president of ANERPV, said despite the year-over-year decline in cargo thefts, more freight crime is occurring near industrial parks as new manufacturing investments pour into Mexico.

“We are seeing an increase in the rate of theft in these new industrial parks, with several parks that have recently opened, especially in the Bajio area [in Central Mexico],” Roman said in a monthly press conference.

The most stolen cargo included food and beverage products, electronics and home goods, Roman said.

“We have seen a different behavior from what had been occurring in previous years at the national level,” Roman said. “Curiously, we are seeing that most of the robberies are taking place during the week, particularly on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.”

Roman also said the majority of recent robberies took place in the afternoon.

The state of Mexico ranked No. 1 in cargo thefts in January and February with 166. The area includes Mexico City and is the most densely populated part of the country.

Jalisco had the second most cargo crimes during the first two months of 2023 with 87. The state is located in western Mexico and borders the Pacific Ocean. Jalisco grows berries, agave (tequila) and limes, as well as produces dairy products, eggs and pork.

The state of Puebla ranked third with 73 thefts, Michoacan had 27 and the states of Guanajuato and Veracruz totaled 25 apiece for January and February.

Port of Lazaro Cardenas to receive $322M investment

Mexican authorities recently announced investments at the Port of Lazaro Cardenas aimed at expanding the port’s cargo handling capacity.

More than $322 million in public and private funding will be allocated to several projects, including construction of a 32-acre yard to accommodate the import and export of up to 7,560 automotive units.

Located along the Pacific Coast, the Port of Lazaro Cardenas is one of the largest commercial seaports in Mexico. The port handled 2.3 million twenty-foot equivalent units in 2022, a 54% year-over-year increase compared to 2021.

Other projects include construction of a new control tower, the renovation of the port’s airport terminal and the optimization of handling of cabotage cargo and customs services. 

Penske Logistics to lay off 152 workers in Texas

Pennsylvania-based Penske Logistics is laying off 152 workers after losing a contract with supermarket chain Kroger.

The layoffs will occur by May 20 at a distribution warehouse in Keller, Texas, after which Kroger will transition to a new logistics provider at the facility.

In a letter to the Texas Workforce Commission, Penske said it would provide meetings on-site with workers and the new logistics provider. 

“We understand there are opportunities for continued employment with the new logistics provider for those employees who are interested,” Penske wrote. 

Texas contract manufacturer expands logistics facility, trucking fleet

Pearland, Texas-based Third Coast, which offers contract manufacturing, packaging and supply chain services, recently completed an expansion of the company’s facility in Friendswood, Texas. 

The expansion, which is dedicated to a strategic customer, includes the addition of a 45,000-square-foot temperature-controlled warehouse, a high-speed packaging line and a 14,000-square-foot freezer, according to a news release

Third Coast also recently expanded its packaging capabilities at its Pearland facility and through one of its subsidiaries added vehicles to its trucking fleet.

Third Coast was founded in 1998. The company has more than 100 employees with facilities and offices throughout the Americas and Asia. Third Coast also manufactures and sells automotive brake fluids and industrial coolants.

Watch: Flagship Trucking folds, causing 455 drivers to lose their jobs.

Click for more FreightWaves articles by Noi Mahoney.

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