Perishable goods freight service for King Island

Introduction of refrigerated container service providing more options for the King Island community.


28 September 2022

While there are many benefits to living on a beautiful island in Bass Strait, the cost of living is not one of them.

As well as higher costs for comparable products, there is often reduced choice with regard to the provider of services.

Which is why the Bass Island Line (BIL) is helping residents to address cost of living pressures by introducing a refrigerated container service to provide King Island retailers with more options when bringing in perishable freight.

The service will allow King Island retailers to source produce from mainland Tasmania in addition to freight already sourced from Victoria by air.

BIL general manager Nigel Foss said analysis by the company of retail prices for perishable items found in some cases King Island residents were paying more than double what residents on mainland Tasmania pay.

“BIL has engaged directly with King Island retailers to determine interest in such a service that would ultimately benefit residents,” he said.

“We will work with retailers and customers on King Island to assist to reduce the impact of cost-of-living pressures to the community on every day perishable food items. We see the introduction of refrigerated container service as one way to help with this.”

Mr Foss said the Devonport to King Island service was already benefiting from increased utilisation.

“BIL has doubled the average number of TEUs carried per voyage since we ceased a direct Victorian port call and instead introduced a transhipment service using SeaRoad Shipping,” he said.

“In December 2021 and January 2022, the average TEUs carried on the service was 22.

“Following the introduction of the new service model, that number increased to an average of 39 TEUs for voyages in March and April 2022.

“In comparison to most recent months, the average TEUs per voyage for June and July was 32.”