CN Grain Movement: New All-Time Records Set

Record pace and multiple milestones achieved

Montreal, Quebec, CANADA

MONTREAL, July 29, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI) announced today that it moved more Canadian grain during the 2018-2019 crop year than ever before and set multiple new records despite the restrictions on Canadian canola exports to China. Many of these records were achieved during the peak demand period and despite extreme weather conditions.

During the 2018-2019 crop year, CN moved over 27 million metric tonnes (MMT) of grain, as compared to the previous record of 26 MMT set in 2016-2017, and compared to 25 MMT in 2017-2018. 

November 2018 broke CN’s best individual month record for grain movement at 2.71 MMT, and that record was surpassed again in April 2019 with 2.72 MMT. CN was also able to deliver seven individual weeks of over 7000 hopper cars of grain movement per week. This past crop year, CN also moved approximately one MMT of grain in containers.

“Our $7.4B dollar investments in our network are delivering results for Canadian grain farmers and the Canadian economy,” said JJ Ruest, president and chief executive officer of CN. “I’m proud of what CN has achieved. Despite a late start to the harvest, record cold temperatures in February, and rainy weather at export terminals restricting ship loading, our dedicated ONE TEAM of railroaders moved more grain than ever before. This was in large part due to strategic investments in people, equipment and capacity. With more locomotives, more crews, and a renewed fleet of rail cars, we are determined to enable the growth of natural resources export supply chains via West Coast ports.”

“This year’s results are all the more impressive when considering that many records were set during the peak grain demand season, and that CN moved an additional one million tonnes of grain in containers,” explained Allen Foster, vice-president of Bulk at CN. “This year was a banner year for grain movement. Grain customers have also focused on locating the majority of brand new high throughput elevators in western Canada on CN - we saw seven open between June 2018 and July 2019, another four announced during the 2018-19 crop year, and two more will open shortly. We are optimistic about the upcoming harvest.”

CN 2018-2019 grain movement records:

  • Best month on record: April 2019 (2.72 MMT)
  • Second-best month on record: November 2018 (2.71 MMT)

Best individual months (as compared to same months in previous years):

  • November 2018 (2.71 MMT)
  • December 2018 (2.50 MMT)
  • January 2019 (2.23 MMT)
  • April 2019 (2.72 MMT)

CN is a true backbone of the economy, transporting more than C$250 billion worth of goods annually for a wide range of business sectors, ranging from resource products to manufactured products to consumer goods, across a rail network of approximately 20,000 route miles spanning Canada and mid-America. CN – Canadian National Railway Company, along with its operating railway subsidiaries – serves the cities and ports of Vancouver and Prince Rupert, B.C., Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile, Ala., and the metropolitan areas of Toronto, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Calgary, Chicago, Memphis, Detroit, Duluth, Minn./Superior, Wis., and Jackson, Miss., with connections to all points in North America. For more information about CN, visit the Company’s website at


Jonathan AbecassisPaul Butcher
Senior ManagerVice-President
Media Relations, CNInvestor Relations, CN