US Agri Houses & Barge Lines start testing Barge Digital Transformation (BDT) Platform
US Agri Houses and Barge Lines have started testing the beta version of the NGFDS Barge Digital Transformation (BDT) Platform, powered by CargoDocs. A total of 51 users have been testing the end-to-end paperless barge trade operations solution over the past weeks, with go live targeted for August.
The first beta release enables stakeholders to ‘create’ a barge (nomination), apply out (i.e., transfer the nomination), accept/reject applications, propose/select a destination, request an electronic Bill of Lading (eBoL), generate, sign, issue the eBoL and transfer the eBoL through the chain, re-consign the barge and complete the trip. The solution also allows users to manage supporting documents, such as Grade and Weight Certificates, and provides trade string visibility and control over complex barge trade flows.
Earlier this year, 21 users tested four versions of the BDT Platform prototype, as essDOCS worked with the industry to co-develop the solution and ensure that it would enable the complete digitization of the NGFA members’ 100,000 annual North to South barge shipments.
Additional features will be released in the coming days, including: busting, partial unload, transferring products to another barge and usability improvements based on user feedback.
The industry group directing and funding the BDT Project – the NGFDS – includes representatives from the NGFA and the following member companies: Bunge North America, Inc.; Cargill, Inc.; Archer Daniels Midland Company; CGB Enterprises, Inc.; CHS Inc.; The Gavilon Group; Louis Dreyfus Company; Zen-Noh Grain Corporation; American Commercial Barge Line; and Ingram Marine Group.