Supply Chain Snapshots - News of the Week (August 28, 2023)
Container Ships Are Waiting at Asian Ports As Retailers Struggle To Shift Excess Stock
(Read more on CNBC)
A combination of factors, including new capacity coming online and the number of retailers who find themselves still sitting on overstocks, mean that carriers are blanking more sailings. That is what has led to a noticeable increase in cargo ships sitting off Asian ports. When it comes to how much extra inventory they’re sitting on, it can vary according to Sanne Manders, President of Ocean and Air at Flexport: “When we looked in March, there was 62% saying I have way too much, or I have too much. In May, it went down to roughly just over 40%. But in July, it’s still just over 40%. So, what we’re still looking at is high inventory levels, which will keep imports relatively modest.”
Wind-Powered Cargo Ship Sets Sail in a Move To Make Shipping Greener
(Read more on CNN)
In the race to uncover ways to lower the carbon footprint of the global shipping industry, a new project called Wind Wings stands to make an outsized impact. The project, a combined effort of UK-based BAR Technologies, Cargill, and the European Union, among others—retrofits steel and glass composite sails onto existing freighters. These high-tech versions of an old-school sail stand to cut fuel use by 1.5 metric tons per wing, per day on an average ocean route.
Panama Canal Delays Have Shippers Mulling Freight Diversions
(Read more on Supply Chain Dive)
The ongoing delays at the Panama Canal due to drought conditions in the region are causing some shippers to seek alternative routes to get their inventory to its destination. This may mean sending goods destined for the East Coast of the U.S. to ports on the West Coast then using roads and rail to finish the journey. Or it may mean sending containers on ships heading through the Suez Canal, despite the possibility of longer lead times and higher upfront costs.
Over 40% of Supply Chain Employees Are Women
(Read more on Supply Chain Brain)
A recent Gartner study shows that the representation of women in c-suite and executive positions across the supply chain is at an historic high of 41%. The study also notes that nearly 70% of the companies polled have established gender diversity goals, and that ~90% have created some kind of inclusivity plans, goals, or initiatives.
Why Cargo-Focused Airports in the US Outperform Passenger Gateways
(Read more on The Loadstar)
Cargo-focused airports (CFAs) have fared better than those whose focus is on passenger traffic when it comes to the expected downturn this year. The study cited, by the Chaddick Institute of DePaul University, found that traffic through these CFAs declined only 3.4% while the U.S. average was 9.1%. Five of the 16 CFAs in the study showed traffic increases and 10 outperformed the national average.
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