The Heart of Inland Terminal
On the corner of County Road 18 C and Hwy 113 in Woodland, California stands Inland Terminal – a state of the art fertilizer storage facility with the capacity to hold 30,000 tons of dry and 30,000 tons of liquid fertilizers. Best identified by the beautiful mural on the side of the dry fertilizer building (painted by Colleen Gnos, daughter of one of our growers), the facility on a rail siding was originally constructed to provide regional fertilizer storage to support crop production for all Northern California growers.
When it comes to fertilizer application, whether it is vines, rice, vegetables, gains or trees, timing is a significant part in the overall success of product application. In 2008, it was becoming increasingly obvious that time restraints and transportation requirements of fertilizer from the closest bulk storage facility in Stockton, California, 60 miles south of Woodland, was not adequate for Northern California growers. “ A driver can make four to five runs per day from Inland Terminal to Northern California customers and before it was a stretch to make two legal runs from Northern California to Stockton in a day,” says Johnny Council, Grow West Vice Chairman. This need, coupled with community support provided by both the City of Woodland and the railroad line, created an opportunity for Grow West, and partner Colusa County Farm Supply, to build the terminal in 2012. Since then, the terminal has been home to 60,000 tons of fertilizer stored by a variety of suppliers in the industry.
“We are a reliable facility that serves many clients across the Northern tier of California agriculture,” comments Council. With a facility of this size, logistics and capacity are everything. Providing services ranging from navigating railcar deliveries, to filling orders when trucks arrive, this small dedicated team of individuals have been running the terminal since 2012 and keeps customers coming back. Ramon Baeza, operation manager at Inland Terminal, believes service always needs to be a top priority to be a successful location and it’s a team effort. “Our goal is to provide the best service to our suppliers and the agriculture industry as a whole. We strive for 100% service because without good service, people will go somewhere else.” This service is what makes the railcars come in smoothly to fill storage containers and then leave the terminal in truck in an orderly manner to fulfill grower’s fertilizer needs.
With so many logistics to comply with in order to keep things running smoothly on a daily basis it can get overwhelming but as Baeza states, “Success comes from being proactive. You will run into rainy days but take on the challenge with a smile and fix it. It’s that simple. Then grow from the challenge to prevent it in the future.” On average the terminal runs about 40 loads of dry fertilizer and 45 loads of liquid fertilizer a day and Baeza’s philosophy has been a key to Inland Terminal’s success.
Michelle Correa, manager at Inland Terminal, shares, “Ramon and his warehouse team are highly regarded by the rail team and all of our clients. They understand how to move product safely and efficiently and can address challenges that arise quickly.” This drive and dedication to efficiency and accuracy has proven a huge benefit to the Inland Terminal customers, and ultimately all Northern California growers, but has also built the quality reputation the terminal has today.