ST. LOUIS — Bunge North America, the North American operating arm of Bunge Ltd., has created a joint venture with SCF Marine Inc., a subsidiary of SEACOR Holdings Inc., to build a river grain terminal in Fairmont City in St. Clair County, Ill. The joint venture, Bunge-SCF Grain, L.L.C., will build a facility on the Mississippi river capable of receiving grains, soybeans, byproducts and other bulk commodities and shipping them either domestically or to the export market.

“Meeting the growing global demand for commodities requires not only more infrastructure, but improved infrastructure, and everything from site selection to facility design is being done to make sure we can efficiently serve farmers and customers,” said Bailey Ragan, vice-president of Bunge Grain, Fertilizer and Biofuels. “The terminal will have high-speed unloading and loading capabilities and is located in one of the most agriculturally productive areas in the Midwest on a site where we have great rail, truck and barge access.”

The facility will have more than a million bushels of permanent storage and will be able to handle high volumes of multiple commodities simultaneously, providing maximum flexibility, Bunge said. Additionally, the site will provide year-round, ice-free river access for barges as well as allow for deepwater barge loading.

“This facility will help us maximize the efficiency of barge and boat assets,” said Tim Power, president of SCF Marine. “We will be able to receive products via rail and truck and transload them directly onto barges for delivery to domestic locations or to the Port of South Louisiana for export.”

Construction is expected to take about a year and will employ about 100 people. Once operational, the facility will have 12 to 20 full-time employees.