According to independent maritime consultancy Drewry, reefer container freight rates are likely to be higher through 2022, outpacing earlier estimates as well as expectations for dry container freight rates. Reefer traffic is seen recovering from a flat 2020, Drewry said in its report Reefer Shipping Forecaster, and added that container vessel slots continue to remain scarce amid tight supply and continuing supply chain disruption.
Drewry’s Global Reefer Container Freight Rate Index, a weighted average of rates across the top 15 reefer intensive deep-sea trade routes, increased 48% over the year to 3Q21. The increase is expected to reach as much as 55% by the end of 4Q21.
Seaborne reefer traffic is expected to increase over 3% in 2021 to reach 136 million tons, a little lower than previous estimates. "All commodities are showing growth in 2021 except bananas."