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Consumer demand to increase this Fourth of July 

This Fourth of July weekend Americans will spend on average $370.75 per household– up 7 percent since 2015.[1] Much of that spending will be on food, retail products and consumer goods that have been recently delivered to store shelves across the country from manufacturing sites and distribution centers through the use of trains and trucks. 

With the increase in consumer demand comes an associated increase in freight movement. Shippers moving full-truckload freight over 500 miles are increasingly turning to intermodal rail, seeking independence from supply chain disruption. Continue reading to learn more about consumer spending this holiday weekend and how intermodal rail plays a key part in helping shippers deliver the summer fun behind the country’s Fourth of July celebrations.

From the rail to the backyard BBQ

Over 156 million Americans celebrate Fourth of July with a cookout, barbeque or picnic. Over $6.6 billion (that’s $71.23 per household) will be spent on food and drink this year.[2] So how do food shippers stock up to meet this demand? Simple – they choose intermodal rail for a cost efficient option to transport products. Through the use of temperature-controlled and dry van intermodal containers, food products are routed all over the country just in time for summer’s backyard BBQs.

What are Americans reaching for this holiday weekend?

Potato chips
It’s a fact, Americans can’t have just one. Last year, Americans ate over $155 million worth of potato chips during July Fourth cookouts.[3] No one likes broken chips, or broken and damaged freight for that matter. That‘s why CSX Transportation (CSXT) Intermodal works with shippers and provides comprehensive blocking and bracing consulting to ensure freight arrives safe and secure.

The July Fourth weekend is the official start of National American Beer Month 163,200,000 ice cold beers will be cracked open over the holiday.[4] Brewers know that kind of demand cannot be met by Clydesdales alone; therefore they are turning to the double-stacked capacity of intermodal rail to deliver refreshment across the U.S.

Hot dogs 
Americans will eat 150 million hot dogs on July Fourth, according to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council.[5] That’s enough to stretch over 20,000 miles or from D.C. to L.A. more than five times!

Baked beans
Americans are 357% more likely to eat baked beans on July Fourth than any other day. Canned foods and other palletized products are ideal commodities for intermodal rail.[6] 

Cool off costs with hot intermodal savings

As temperatures soar, many take to the beach to cool off. Last year, over 370 million people visited America’s beaches.[7] By serving terminals located across the Eastern U.S., CSXT Intermodal delivers the essentials Americans need to make the Fourth of July a day at the beach.  

Summer essentials delivered by intermodal rail

The average American woman owns 4 swimsuits.[8] Retail shippers turn to intermodal rail to connect manufacturing facilities with distribution centers as a strategy for securing capacity and managing transportation costs.

Over 400,000 surfboards are sold worldwide per year.[9]  Sporting goods, such as surfboards and other beach favorites, can be shipped via intermodal year-round thanks to flexible capacity that can scale to meet demand.

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends applying one ounce of sunscreen for every two hours in the sun.[10] That adds up to over 3.5 million ounces of sunscreen that will be needed for America’s sun bathers. And for those who forget to apply, aloe vera and other over-the-counter burn remedies can be shipped using intermodal rail.


Declare your independence from the highway this Fourth of July 

CSXT’s expansive intermodal network and access to scalable capacity helps shippers meet the demands of this holiday and all year-round. Intermodal’s double-stack capability moves more freight more efficiently than over the road, transporting up to 280 truckloads on a single train. As the most environmentally friendly land freight solution, use of rail also helps keeps our Earth green – from the redwood forest to the Gulf Stream waters – and that’s certainly something to celebrate this holiday weekend.


If you are a shipper and interested in gaining some independence from the highway and making the move to intermodal rail, request your complimentary Highway to Rail (H2R) analysis or click here to connect with an intermodal expert today.




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