CN invests C$20-million in expansion of cold supply chain reefer capacity

MONTREAL, June 1, 2015 /CNW/ - CN (TSX: CNR) (NYSE: CNI) announced today a C$20-million investment in the expansion of its cold supply chain capacity to help producers and distributors of chilled or frozen foods grow their businesses in North American and overseas markets.

JJ Ruest, executive vice-president and chief marketing officer, said: "CN was the first railway to introduce highway-to-rail conversion of reefer service in transborder markets. Our high-quality cold supply chain service has been embraced by the marketplace.  We are now adding capacity to grow and help Canada's food processing industry gain and maintain access to new domestic and international markets."

To accommodate growth, CN is acquiring 200 more domestic, 53-foot temperature-controlled containers, which will add to the current fleet of containers circulating inside North America.

CN is also acquiring 32 electrical generators to move 40-foot international marine reefers to and from CN-served ports on CN intermodal trains. The power packs provide economies of scale by connecting up to 17 international marine reefers at a time.

CN, in collaboration with other railroads, offers cold supply chain rail services between Canada-United States-Mexico, as well as between Canada and overseas markets.

Barry Sutton, vice-president, international sales, for Maple Leaf Foods, said: "Food safety is always a top priority for us. We follow world-leading food safety practices to ensure our consumers can enjoy our products with confidence. CN shares our food safety vision. Through collaboration, CN has created a robust supply chain backed by high food safety standards. CN's transportation leadership and expertise give us peace of mind knowing that our products will make it to our customers nationally and internationally, safely and on time."

CN has harnessed innovative technologies to ensure that food security and integrity is maintained. Robust remote monitoring of interior container temperatures, a dedicated reefer desk team and superior exception management services are key elements of its operational and service excellence for the cold supply chain.

Allan Walker, director, Canada and export customer service and logistics for McCain Foods (Canada), said: "McCain Foods is pleased with the CN announcement. Adding more capacity addresses a critical supply chain need and helps meet our goals in providing quality products to our customers in an efficient and environmentally friendly manner."

Ruest said: "CN's cold supply chain service offers the food industry a quality and cost-effective alternative to highway trucks and gives producers pursuing overseas opportunity a great tool to expand market share. CN is growing with its customers, aiming to help them compete more effectively in their own markets."

Forward-Looking Statements 

Certain information included in this news release constitutes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and under Canadian securities laws. CN cautions that, by their nature, these forward-looking statements involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions.  The Company cautions that its assumptions may not materialize and that current economic conditions render such assumptions, although reasonable at the time they were made, subject to greater uncertainty. Such forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results or performance of the Company or the rail industry to be materially different from the outlook or any future results or performance implied by such statements. Important factors that could affect the above forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, the effects of general economic and business conditions, industry competition, inflation, currency and interest rate fluctuations, changes in fuel prices, legislative and/or regulatory developments, compliance with environmental laws and regulations, actions by regulators, various events which could disrupt operations, including natural events such as severe weather, droughts, floods and earthquakes, labor negotiations and disruptions, environmental claims, uncertainties of investigations, proceedings or other types of claims and litigation, risks and liabilities arising from derailments, and other risks and assumptions detailed from time to time in reports filed by CN with securities regulators in Canada and the United States. Reference should be made to "Management's Discussion and Analysis" in CN's annual and interim reports, Annual Information Form and Form 40-F filed with Canadian and U.S. securities regulators, available on CN's website, for a summary of major risks.

CN assumes no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect future events, changes in circumstances, or changes in beliefs, unless required by applicable Canadian securities laws. In the event CN does update any forward-looking statement, no inference should be made that CN will make additional updates with respect to that statement, related matters, or any other forward-looking statement.

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 spanning Canada and mid-America. CN – Canadian National Railway Company, along with its operating railway subsidiaries -- serves the cities and ports of Vancouver, 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 on CN, visit the company's website at www.cn.ca.

SOURCE CN

For further information: Media: Mark Hallman, Director, Communications & Public Affairs, (905) 669-3384; Investment Community: Janet Drysdale, Vice-President, Investor Relations, (514) 399-0052

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