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Impacts of fuel costs, distance-to-market, and equipment utilization on relative costs of trailer-on-flatcar and truck transportation for fresh fruits and vegetables in the South

Impacts of fuel costs, distance-to-market, and equipment utilization on relative costs of trailer-on-flatcar and truck transportation for fresh fruits and vegetables in the South

Southern journal of agricultural economics Southern Agricultural Economics Association 14(2): 111-117

The use of trailers-on-flatcars (TOFC) to transport fresh fruits and vegetables in the South is examined. A costing model is employed to examine the effects of equipment utilization rates, distance-to-market, and fuel costs on the relative per revenue mile costs of trucks and TOFC. The results suggest that while fuel costs and distance-to-market are important, the level of equipment utilization, in particular the percentage of loaded backhauls, has the greatest impact in determining the least cost mode.

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