We’re on deck!

Le Douce France, the latest addition to our fleet, made its inaugural call in French Guiana on 18th March 2020 . In the context of Covid-19, we were not able to celebrate this call with petits-fours and Champagne as we had planned, but everyone was mobilised! Thank you to the crew of Douce France, to our agent Marfret Guyane, to our handling company GLMP who are mobilizing to supply French Guiana with food and medicines. Everywhere, our sailors, our agents and our cargo handlers remain 100% committed to accomplish their missions hich are crucial for our economy and our fellow citizens. More than ever, the exceptional situation we are going through highlights the vital importance of the shipping industry and all the players in the logistics chain. The Ministry in charge of Transport has also praised “the commitment of the port areas to meet the needs of the population and for the continuity of the country’s economic activity”. Bravo!

We wish you all the best to get through this crisis.

Illustrations: 1st call of M/V Douce France in French Guiana


COVID 19 – Activity Continuity Plan

Ladies and gentlemen, Dear Customers and Partners,

In view of the current health crisis situation, our company MARFRET undertakes to participate in the fight against the spread of the COVID 19 epidemic while maintaining our level of service in strict compliance with the protection measures decided by the Government authorities.

Thus, MARFRET sets up as of today Tuesday 17th March 2020, an Activity Continuity Plan in order to maintain the best possible functioning of your import/export activities.

Our agencies remain fully operational with a permanence reduced to the strict essentials and our teleworking teams are at your disposal to answer all your usual requests (pricing, release confirmation, booking or loading confirmation, container tracking, and all other questions you might have).

Call transfers to our mobile lines have been programmed and we invite you to contact your local agencies at the usual numbers. Do not hesitate to email us for all your requests, we all have access to our messaging system.

For the time being and according to information transmitted by the Maritime Affairs, the European port terminals and container depots remain open at the usual times. Port calls and activities are maintained as land and sea logistics remain essential to ensure a good supply worldwide.

Our teams are at your disposal for any further information you may require.

Douce France – A new generation

Taking calculated risks, venturing onto the seas to link the world’s continents whatever the weather, overcoming geopolitical storms without flinching… since 1951, Neptune and Aeolus have watched kindly over our family’s -and our company’s- long journeys. We have managed to bring under control the ceaseless and fickle backwash of its joys and sorrows.

The Marseille Fret story began with the chartering of the Douce France, a trawler saved at the last gasp from the scrapyard to carry cargo to and from Algeria. Sixty eight years later, on 20th January next, the Yangzijiang shipyards will deliver the fifth-generation Douce France, fully-owned by Marfret.

A technological masterpiece, the environment-friendly vessel is packed with the latest innovations designed to provide optimal environmental performance. We have gone way beyond the regulatory requirements in force since 1st January, which oblige ships to use 0.5% sulphur fuel in order to reduce pollution. The engine fitted to the Douce France has been designed to use this fuel as standard. The ship also has a system to treat its ballast water. The combination of studies carried out to perfect its trim and the 190m-long vessel’s X-BOW® hull shape enhance its seaworthiness, especially in heavy weather. We have taken great care also in our choice of rudder and propeller in order to achieve the highest possible efficiency.

The 2296-TEU ship, which is equipped with 600 reefer plugs, will be deployed in March on our South America service, a service that has expanded over recent years with the increase in fruit exports from Brazil. We will be in place and ready for the exports of melons, grapes and mangoes destined for the European consumer markets. To better adapt to the line’s commercial and technical specificities, the hull’s design and its shallow “Guyanamax” draught allows it to easily navigate the channel that provides access to Dégrad-des-Cannes’ container terminal. In view of the investments being planned for the Guiana Space Centre at Kourou, we have specially equipped the Douce France with three 60-tonne cranes, two of which can be coupled to provide a lifting capacity of 100 tonnes.

The Marfret Guyane and Marfret Marajo, the ship’s predecessors on the South America service, will be changing lines to carry flowers, fruit and coffee between Colombia and the United States.

This new delivery is a statement of confidence in the long-term future. I would like to share this belief in the future with you, for us to set our sights on the horizon in order to overcome the hurdles we face in our daily lives.

May I wish you, and all those you cherish, a very healthy, happy and prosperous New Year.

Raymond VIDIL