Workers at the Port of Pascagoula's Bayou Casotte terminal load newsprint onto a cargo ship bound for South America on Friday morning.
Gearbulk, an international shipping company that specializes in forest products and metals, makes a monthly trip from Pascagoula to the west side of South America. The enclosed forestry carrier arrived at Bayou Casotte's Terminal G on Monday.
On Friday morning, workers used two 40-ton gantry cranes to load newsprint onto cargo ship Swift Arrow bound for Chile, Ecuador and Peru.
Gearbulk's large carriers' cargo loads usually average 10,000 to 14,000 tons each month. This month's load, which exceeds 16,000 tons, boosts labor requirements and increases port fees and other port service factors, port leaders said.
The vessel will deliver wooden poles to Peru, newsprint to Chile, and linerboard -- used to make cardboard boxes -- to Ecuador and Chile.
While most forest products exported through Pascagoula are typically from the region, port leaders said, a large portion of this ships 16,000 tons of cargo was manufactured in Mississippi.
The newsprint was made in Grenada, and the poles were made in Philadelphia. Much of the linerboard exported from the Port of Pascagoula is manufactured in Monticello.
"We are proud to be able to offer port facilities that accommodate a wide variety of cargoes and vessels," Port Director Mark McAndrews said, "and to take part in providing a gateway for Mississippi products to world markets."
Additionally, Gearbulk is transporting special cargo on this trip to assist with Chilean earthquake relief.
On Feb. 27, Chile was rocked by a magnitude 8.8 earthquake, which originated off the Maule coast and killed more than 500 people.
Port officials said Gearbulk is carrying 38 housing units to Chile.