• Mon. Nov 29th, 2021

Suspended in summer 2019, the Perpignan-Rungis “primeurs train” relaunched – archyworldys

Byeditorial

Oct 22, 2021

His return was confirmed by the Prime Minister in September. Mr. Castex will relaunch, Friday, October 22, the “train of primeurs”, which transports Mediterranean fruits and vegetables from Perpignan to the market of Rungis (Val-de-Marne) near Paris, after two years of interruption. The first train must leave the Saint-Charles market in Perpignan at 4:28 p.m., to arrive in Rungis on Saturday at 3:08 a.m., in time to feed the belly of Paris.

This connection, which allows the transport of fruits and vegetables in refrigerated wagons in which pallets are loaded directly, had been suspended in the summer of 2019, lack of customers. The obsolescence of the equipment – and, therefore, concerns about the durability of the link – had then been widely questioned.

Frédéric Delorme, President of Rail Logistics Europe (SNCF’s rail freight subsidiary), explains today:

“It was the harsh law of the market that applied and it was very harsh, because the prices of the road are unbeatable. The train was not subsidized. “

Read also The “primeurs train” between Rungis and Perpignan will restart in October

Trains half as long

The new link uses the same principle, but with trains that are half as long. Of the 80 wagons available to Ermewa (a wagon lessor, a subsidiary of the SNCF), 34 could be retyped, making it possible to have convoys of 12 wagons each – with 12 wagons mobilized in one direction, 12 in the other and 10 kept in reserve or in maintenance.

These 12 wagons will transport as much fruit and vegetables as 18 trucks, five times a week from November to July (during the early season, especially from Spain and Morocco). They were all leased by the Primever Charger, until the end of 2024. “For the judgment of the offer it was necessary to have customers who are committed”, recalls Mr. Delorme.

Rail Logistics Europe was chosen, with a project also including the creation of a “Rail motorway” – loading semi-trailers and containers onto trains – from Boulou (Pyrénées-Orientales) to the port of Gennevilliers (Hauts-de-Seine), which must be launched by the end of the year.

Mr. Castex had explained shortly after his arrival in Matignon that he had been “Bruised” by the suspension of the primeurs train, which leaves from its chosen land. He is no stranger to the reopening of the line, for which the government launched in December a call for expressions of interest to find a buyer.

Ecological benefits

The advantage being that this additional link makes it possible to transport more varied products, especially intended for large-scale distribution, and to load goods in the reverse north-south direction, unlike the greengrocer train which returns empty.

“It costs more than the road and that’s why a subsidy is needed, but the ecological benefits justify this subsidy”, insists Mr. Delorme. This reached 14 million euros over the duration of the agreement until the end of 2024, according to Matignon.

The early vegetables train, which will provide nearly 10% of the flow of fruit and vegetables absorbed by Rungis, should not run beyond this date, because the refrigerated wagons will then be completely out of steam.

The idea is to run from 2025 a rail motorway from Barcelona to Antwerp that would stop at Perpignan and Rungis. A solution approved by Cyril Gornes, director of the Saint-Charles market, for whom combined truck-train transport with containers allows better respect for the cold chain.

But to do so by then, it will be necessary to build a terminal in the Ile-de-France wholesale market, which is currently not suitable for unloading containers or trucks. “An ambitious project” a combined rail-road transport facility capable of accommodating three trains per day is in the boxes.

The CGT-Cheminots, which has mobilized a lot for the return of the primeurs train, has already celebrated its ” Victoire “ Thursday in Perpignan.

Read also Article reserved for our subscribers The government is banking on a rebound in rail transport

The World with AFP

One thought on “Suspended in summer 2019, the Perpignan-Rungis “primeurs train” relaunched – archyworldys”
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