Probably not in recent times, and almost certainly not perishable goods (pork bellies etc.) There's a pretty long thread on money SE, from which I'll just extract this bit on CME [Chicago Mercantile Exchange] rules:
For some commodities you can't get physical delivery (for instance, Cheese futures won't deliver piles of cheese to your door, for reasons that may be obvious)
6003.A. Final Settlement
There shall be no delivery of cheese in settlement of this contract. All contracts open as of the termination of trading shall be cash settled based upon the USDA monthly weighted average price in the U.S. for cheese. The reported USDA monthly weighted average price for cheese uses both 40 pound cheddar block and 500 pound barrel prices
That seems to be the case for most agri products, e.g.:
Feeder Cattle (GF) futures are cash settled.
Lean Hog (HE) futures are cash settled.
USD Malaysian Crude Palm Oil Calendar Swaps and Malaysian Crude Palm Oil Calendar Futures are cash settled upon expiration.
In contrast however
KC HRW Wheat (KE) futures are physically delivered upon expiration.
The detailed rules for the latter however establish only a small number of delivery points:
Regular elevators or warehouses shall be located in the switching limits of:
1.) Kansas City, Missouri/Kansas,
2.) Hutchinson, Kansas,
3.) Salina/Abilene, Kansas, or
4.) Wichita, Kansas.
[...] the cost of delivery will be debited or credited to a clearing
firm’s settlement account. Buyers obligated to accept delivery must take delivery [hours specified].
(But note that it's a little misleading what "take delivery" actually means in practical terms; see details from the USDA at the end of my answer.)
Given the 1980s NYT article from Brian's answer, it may be interesting to investigate when e.g. CME rules were changed to categorically exclude physical delivery as the settlement method for some (perishable) items. Any of the fancier stories of such deliveries (involving pork bellies etc.) would have had to happen before such rules were changed.
That NYT article says that the exchanges were strongly in favor of cash-only settlements back then, but apparently it wasn't a strict rule in the 1980s:
In fact, delivery problems rank second to the collection of debts each year. ''No one has put a dollar cost on these problems, but we all know they are enormous and growing,'' said Leo Melamed, special counsel to the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, its former chairman and a major architect of financial futures. ''This is why the trend in the industry is toward contracts featuring cash settlement rather than the physical delivery of goods. It is the most equitable system, the main reason the Commodity Futures Trading Commission favors it.''
But note that even "physical delivery" can be misleading as to what it usually meant (just warehouse receipts):
Those who stand for delivery can make money when the cash price of the commodity is above the futures price. They do this by having their brokers exchange the futures for the goods in the form of warehouse receipts and then selling the receipts in the cash market.
Others who normally take delivery are those who use futures as ''paper warehouses.'' Rather than finance inventory, commodity users, exporters and manufacturers buy futures with deliveries calculated to match their needs.
But the prospect of having to take delivery usually drives many small traders out of a market weeks before a contract expires, thus often denying them potential profits, Mr. Melamed pointed out, and this breeds many disputes as well.
It's notable however that option of actual physical deliver existed so that "commodity users" (presumably companies trading the actual commodity) could actually enter this futures market. It's unclear how/if the exchanges could distinguish between the various classes of traders.
Regarding the commodities that still allow/require physical delivery, e.g. wheat futures, the USDA has a (ton of) information on the settlement process (mainly because of a "scandal" in which futures prices didn't converge with the delivery market cash prices):
For many agricultural commodities, such as corn, soybeans, and wheat, terms of futures contracts are
satisfied through a process that is closely related to physical delivery but does not require the movement
of any grain. As the contract nears expiration, the short side of a futures contract initiates the delivery
sequence by choosing to make delivery rather than offset its position and notifies the exchange accordingly. [...] The
exchange then informs the oldest outstanding long position holder of the responsibility to take delivery
from the short. The futures contract is terminated when the short provides the long with delivery
instruments in return for payment. Delivery instruments for KCBT wheat are warehouse receipts,
which give the holder title to actual grain in storage at a storage facility. Shipping certificates are used
in CBOT markets; these represent for the holder the right, but not the obligation, to demand load-out
of the commodity from a particular shipping station. Shipping certificates also give the short more
flexibility in the delivery process because they do not represent physical grain in a regular warehouse,
which takes up storage space that they might otherwise use. Instead, shipping certificates represent a
commitment to provide grain when the certificate is canceled.
Delivery instruments provide the holder with access to grain, are transferrable, and do not require
load-out within a specified timeframe, so long as the holder pays a storage fee. Importantly, the
maximum fee for holding a delivery instrument is set by the exchange. This fee, which is assessed
daily, is paid to the regular-for-delivery warehouse, or “regular firm,” that originated the delivery
instrument. In return, the regular firm is responsible for presenting the grain to the holder, once loadout is requested. Regular firms regulate the delivery process: only they are able to create original
delivery instruments. Before initiating delivery, other short position holders must acquire either new
instruments from regular firms or existing instruments from other parties.
Typically, few deliveries are executed because trading the commodity through the delivery process
is more expensive than offsetting the futures position and transacting directly with a trading
partner. Grain and soybean futures markets are better suited to facilitate risk management and price
discovery than to serve as a vehicle for exchange of physical title. In fact, extensive deliveries are a
sign that a contract is out of balance, meaning that the delivery terms favor one side of the market
or the other; contract design problems that encourage substantial deliveries cause futures markets
to fail (Hieronymus, 1977). In the extreme case, favored traders may attempt to use market power
during the delivery period to artificially alter the price of the futures contract and make sizable
profits (Pirrong, 1993; Pirrong, 2001). When the contract is in balance and the market works properly, short and long position holders usually prefer to offset their futures positions. In doing so, both
sides avoid the costs associated with the delivery process (e.g., placing grain in and out of storage,
weights and grading fees, storage fees, interest costs, and the opportunity cost of backing the
Under the delivery market design theory, non-convergence is caused by a positive wedge between the price of storage and the cost of holding delivery instruments.
(The USDA paper has many more details on this latter issue, including econometric models, but those are besides the point here.)
But from there, in the modern physical settlement process, there doesn't seem to be any time limit or actual obligation to take possession of actual items, as long the storage fee is paid. I don't know what happens if some firm/trader stops paying that storage fee, litigation or some kind or forfeit, I suspect.
In that regard, the Intercontinental Exchange has these general rules for agri product futures with physical delivery:
The delivery process commences during a defined delivery notice
period, with the submission of notices by the holders of short
positions. The clearing organization then assigns delivery and
receipt obligations to holders of open positions. Each contract has
its own notice period, which typically commences prior to the last
trading day. To settle an agricultural futures contract, the seller
will have to deliver the specified quantity and quality of the
agricultural commodity and the buyer will have to take delivery and
make payment, in accordance with the contract specifications. It will
be your responsibility to make any necessary arrangements to be able
to make or take physical delivery under the contract. If you wish to
avoid making or taking delivery, you must close out your position
prior to the notice period. Contracts remaining open after the
contract expires must be settled by delivery. [...]
If you have a position that is not closed by the commencement of the
notice period, you may be required to make or take delivery under the
contract. In that case, you will be matched with another market
participant to complete delivery. You will be required to make all
necessary arrangements to make or take delivery, and assume all
related costs and expenses, including arrangements for warehouse
facilities and required certifications, and paying all storage
charges, handling charges and inspection, weighing, grading and
certification fees. [...]
Agricultural futures contracts traded on ICE Futures U.S. are
centrally cleared by ICE Clear US, Inc. However, ICE Clear US is not
responsible for making or accepting delivery under a contract, and is
not liable for any failure of a clearing member or other person to
make or accept delivery. [...]
Moreover, in the event that a party with whom you are matched for
delivery fails to make or accept delivery under the contract, you will
have to pursue remedies for such failure against such party in
accordance with IFUS rules and applicable law, and you will be exposed
to a risk of financial loss from such failure.
In response to a comment below about the [non-]relevance of CBOT/CME rules, it's true that e.g. by 2003 the commodities futures market for agricultural products was only about 46% done (by volume) on US exchanges, according to Futures Industry Association data. So yeah, if some Wall Street guy bought commodities futures on some non-US exchange, who knows what might have happened in terms of delivery. (According that source, the Dalian Commodity Exchange China was the largest agri product futures market even then ; a quick check shows that the DCE futures contracts, e.g. for rice are with physical delivery but in English at least there are no other details on that besides "the delivery warehouses of polished round-grained rice designated by DCE".)
Interestingly enough, since some
comments below the question mentioned Glencore as the trader suspected... there's news that they had operated transaction on the DCE... in 2018 for iron ore. The same story says however that futures investing was usually restricted in China, to Chinese investors. Glencore is an actual mining company so them getting physical delivery of an [ore] transport would probably not be an issue. But the same 2018 story I found says that Glencore operated on the DCE through a Singaporean (financial) firm, Straits Financial, which has offices in other countries, including the US. Indeed, if the latter (financial) firm e.g. was sent an ore shipment (or some other commodity) intended for Glencore that might have been a problem for a financial firm. (The Wikipedia article on Glenconre isn't terribly clear, but Glenconre appears to also trade on the commodities markets directly; it's possible that the DailyWTF story thus involved a trading office of Glencore, mistaken for some mining/storage facility also of Glencore. MarketWatch confirms that Glencore also has a trading division of its own. The DailyWTF has this additional bit that apparently made that confusion possible:
You can’t just call up FedEx and request delivery of thousands upon thousands of tons of raw material to some office complex downtown. Commodities can only be delivered to a fixed number of delivery points, such as warehouses adjacent to train yards or ports. Of course, since Æxecor’s offices were in located on Pier 53, a recently redeveloped warehouse district off the river, it would have seemed like the logical place to accept delivery of a whole bunch of coal, especially to a rules engine. Whoops. [...]
As it turned out, it was more difficult than Brad could have ever imagined to sell real coal. The commodities market really only deals in futures, and everyone who actually needs 28,000 tons of coal has bought it long in advance. And besides, who wants to buy coal from some guy named Brad? Eventually, after paying exorbitant wharfing, shipping, environmental, docking, unloading, loading, and multiple-fee fees, Brad was finally able to unload it for twenty cents on the dollar.
That last bit suggests it was a separate trading firm that "Brad" was at (something like the Singaporean firm that [more recently] did futures transactions on Glencore's behalf on the DCE) rather than at Glencore itself (or the giant corporation might have been able to sort it out internally by sending the shipment elsewhere.)
And although it's a dead link now; archive.org has this 2009 story (mentioned in comments on the DailyWTF one):
I checked in with Minyanville's Ryan Krueger -- my go-to guy on all things commodities -- and asked if he knew of any futures contracts that had ever slipped through the cracks without being settled.
"Ideally, the broker will make sure everything goes according to plan," the Prince of Peanut Oil told me. "But I once knew a guy who was trading for himself. He bought six egg contracts, with each contract worth 18,000 cartons of one dozen eggs. That's 1,296,000 total. The guy somehow made the mistake of taking delivery."
"Well, there were 28 or so delivery points throughout the United States and it was (and still is, generally) the seller's option as to where to deliver the eggs," he told me. "The seller will always pick the weakest of the cash markets for delivery, so my friend got his eggs delivered to him somewhere in Georgia, where prices were way below anywhere else. He had to unload almost 1.3 million eggs through a local wholesaler at a 20% loss."
So if that's true, that (futures') trader took delivery of those eggs, but not quite in the sense that the physical delivery was forced on him at his office/premises. (Even in this [more plausible] eggs story, some details are missing like on which exchange the trade might have happened, or in what year.) This story is also fairly similar to the NPR story (from Dimitri Vulis' answer) with 40 cattle getting delivered to some pen at the East St. Louis Stockyards. (Those particular stockyards were probably closed before the year 2000.)