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How To Organize Transportation Of Furniture

Moving out isn’t something new. Everyone shifts from one place to another periodically. However, there are fewer people who move between cities and even fewer who shift to different countries – with the SAME furniture. 

Let’s admit it; not everyone will have enough budget to start an entirely new life in a different state or a country. Sometimes, people have unprecedented emotional attachment with their furniture. Moreover, some people love collecting antique pieces and furniture from different parts of the world. All of this requires superior moving, because what good is furniture that you can’t shift in one-piece?

packing tips for moving
packing tips for moving

Packing Tips For Moving Everyone Should Know:

To ensure that the transportation of your furniture is done right, you need to pack it up the right way. So here are some packing tips for moving that you need to know;

  1. List Out The Options:

Before you start packing anything, you need to have all your options sorted out. This means that you know all the ways available to transport the furniture and other antique stuff that you are transferring. A popular, safer option nowadays, is freight transportation. We have noticed a high rise in the trucking industry over the years. As trucks get more reliable, people are finding them a cheaper alternative for shipments they used to send via ships.

Before you finalize on one company, ensure that you have their shipping insurance. While losses during transportation through a competent service is a rare sight, the possibility of an uncontrollable incident is still there.

  1. Disassemble Your Furniture:

The first thing you will learn from all moving out tips booklets is disassembling your furniture. However, many fail to tell you that this process might be harder than it sounds. Disassembling requires careful attention towards every corner of your furniture. You need to disassemble certain parts before doing so with others. So, if you aren’t skilled enough to do it, ensure calling in experts for the job. An expert knows the right equipment to use with different types of furniture and also knows how to distribute weight in such a way that loading the furniture doesn’t get hard.

  1. Make It Customs-Friendly:

When transporting overseas, you must take into account local customs restrictions and go out of your way to offer as much information as possible on any paperwork. The last thing you would want is your furniture to arrive in good condition only to be damaged during customs assessment. A good transportation company could help you through this process. 

  1. Use The Right Material:

One of the most significant moving out tips include using the right material. For example, you can choose between bubble wrap, and paper wrap for different products. As cliche as this may sound, don’t apply any tape on your furniture directly. Yes, people still make such mistakes! 

Similarly, some products require cardboard boxes for good packaging. On the other hand, bigger components might be transported in a non-packaging way. Again, your transportation company will walk you through a list of do’s and don’ts in this regard.

Many companies tend to load their trucks in various ways. However, one common way is to load all the stuff closely with each other to ensure zero movements and hence zero damage. Yet this varies from furniture to furniture. It is best that you have a detailed conversation about the whole shifting process with your transportation company before the shifting day.

  1. Organize Everything:

Lastly, before letting the furniture load onto the trucks, ensure that you have properly organized everything. This includes keeping a check on what furniture did you put and in which box. You should perform proper labeling. This would also help you in ensuring that all the furniture has been picked and transported in one-piece. Moreover, when the furniture reaches your new home, it would be much less of a hassle to set it up there as all things would be unpacked in the right order.

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Artificial intelligence and machine learning in supply chain

Artificial Intelligence has radically changed the landscape of the entire world, AI has revolutionized business procedures. Tasks that used to take days, a lot of manpower and critical thinking are now done in no time with the use of Artificial Intelligence. Machine learning is a part of Artificial Intelligence, that emphasizes the learning of complex algorithms, patterns, and software in the automated mode without requiring any prior programming. AI and machine learning in supply chain and other industries are revolutionizing the way we work.

Machine learning processes the information and performs precise data analysis that is used for accurate estimation, predictions, and pattern behaviors. This information is vital and used to understand the market and improvise the procedures in areas where required. It uses algorithms and is best suited for calculating and organizing big data. Machine Learning (ML) is the most appropriate tool for detecting irregularities, picking up trends, and processing insights. These qualities make Machine Learning a perfect tool for the supply chain.       

The world is moving faster than ever before, and the supply chain process is getting more difficult as well as more complex. Even small errors can cause huge hurdles in the way of the supply chain. In these circumstances, the margin for error is little to none, and continuous production is a must requirement. To ensure seamless production and logistics AI is used. It comes in handy in predicting almost all the outcomes of specific situations, and that information is utilized during decision-making. AI is exceptional at reducing machine downtime and increasing productivity, hence making it even more valuable for businesses in this modern digital era. 

Since we have already discussed how AI and machine learning work, we can now dive into the specifics and explain how it has or will help the supply chain and enhance operations. 

machine learning supply chain
machine learning supply chain

Inventory management

Accurate inventory management is essential for running seamless operations, keeping the track of the items in and out of the warehouse could be a difficult task. There are numerous stages of inventory management such as processing, pick up, packaging, etc. This could complicate things, and drag the process, wasting a lot of time. Along with saving time, correct inventory management can save over and understock, and inaccurate order shipments that decrease the return rate and increase customer satisfaction. 

The high-functioning ability of AI tools makes them stand out when it comes to processing huge chunks of data which is highly useful in inventory management. Quick processing of data along with precise algorithms helps in predicting consumer behavior, and knowing your customer’s requirement is the biggest commodity in business right now.  

More success than ever!

The automation and continuous learning process of AI and machine learning-based gadgets ensure a secure environment for warehouse workers as well as preserve the materials for longer periods. Machine Learning can be proactively used in informing the management about possible loopholes in the warehouse and system loopholes. It can also perform maintenance tasks by tracking and resolving repeated errors and mishaps.   

Timely deliveries

AI and Machine Learning based systems can assist in making the processes quicker, more secure, precise, and independent of workers and manpower. These changes help in ensuring secure and timely deliveries along with fulfilling maximum customer requirements. The automatic systems don’t require any programming, which expedites all the procedures compared to conventional warehouse operations. Removing these loopholes helps in achieving maximum efficiency with minimum resources.      

Smart decision-making

Supply chain management software and tools operating on AI and Machine Learning play a significant role in decision-making and policymaking. The accurate predictions, learning market trends, estimating customer behavior, advanced inventory management, and multiple factors that have a major impact on businesses are related to AI and are brought into consideration during decision-making, and all of them are related to AI.    

Conclusion

The use of AI and ML in the supply chain has opened a diverse set of possibilities for future operations and business models. We’re watching more and more companies every day switching to AI-based systems, the use of data processing and application of algorithms has radically shifted the paradigm of the supply chain, and considering its success, it’ll only continue to grow and control the market.

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Advanced analytics in supply chain management & industry’s transformation

To understand the importance of advanced analytics in supply chain management, you need to understand the meaning of the term. When we address advanced analytics, we are discussing a data analysis methodology, that relies upon multiple factors such as predictive modeling, deep learning, Business Process Automation (BPA), machine learning algorithms, and several analytical as well as statistical approaches. These diverse methods assist in analyzing business data from a diverse range of sources with accuracy and precision.    

Supply chain management is the administration and handling of transportation and movement of products as well as services. From raw materials to final products and final deliveries to the customers, each process is a part of the supply chain. Ensuring seamless transportation and enhancing customer satisfaction are the primary goals of supply chain management. 

In order to enhance your supply chain, first, you have to understand the dynamics of the market, resolve customer complaints, and consider customer feedback when creating strategic plans. The use of advanced data analytics in supply chain management has positively altered the market. Utilizing advanced algorithms and reviewing the accurate data of each procedure of the supply chain has allowed companies to focus on the particular areas of lacking and has provided them with the chance to improve those areas. 

Advanced analytics breaks down the data into multiple categories, which helps you in understanding your operations much better. 

Following are advanced analytical factors that have helped transform supply chain management:

demand forecasting in supply chain
demand forecasting in supply chain

Forecasting in Supply Chain (Helps in Decision Making)

Demand forecasting by utilizing advanced data analytics has brought significant changes in supply chain management. Data mining and Predictive Analytics are often used to forecast future events and market trends with high accuracy. Knowing and comprehending the future provides an edge to the companies while forming upcoming strategies and setting up targets. Estimating precise demand and supply helps in promoting the right product or service at the right time! 

Capacity Planning

Capacity planning is the procedure that estimates the number of accessible resources for production, it includes all the machinery, work units, manpower, and other related means or assets that contribute to manufacturing. Using this information, companies decide whether they’ll be able to meet the market’s demand or not, The analysis is quite crucial in future decision-making and planning.

When we use the latest data analytical tools and algorithms, they provide us with precise market numbers, hence making it easier for the companies to meet their requirements by taking immediate action. The insights on stock, warehouse operations, inventory, and other supply chain operation has radically improved the supply chain management operations. With better planning and forecasting, businesses grow at a higher rate than ever and flourish in the market. This dynamic approach has helped companies to the market trends and latest developments faster than ever before!

Financial Enhancements and Sales 

The use of advanced analytics in sales and operations has resulted in immense improvements, the numbers assist in enhancing the financial planning and running operations seamlessly. Integrated Business Planning (IBP) assists the managers in identifying financial issues, as well as indicating the sloppy areas of the operations department. With accuracy in sales, operations, manufacturing numbers, and estimated production, companies are able to simplify the production processes and financial procedures resulting in better outcomes.   

In conclusion, the use of advanced algorithms and the latest data analytics has helped multiple companies enhance their customer service, become cost-effective, reduce production time, and find the best delivery routes. All in all, advanced analytics has transformed supply chain management for the better, and it continues to evolve the market and enhance the procedures.

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Test for COVID-19 variants: Here is what you need to know!

covid 19 delta variant test

The outbreak of COVID-19 was an international tremendous shock. There is not a single country where one cannot see the symptoms of the virus. Although, the virus was first noted in Wuhan, China. Eventually, the notorious coronavirus was seen influencing the whole population in a matter of months. Soon, the test for Covid-19 variants evolved and was being conducted around the world.

During the first half, people were getting tested for covid by the health care helpers, that were using the nasal swab PCR test and the throat PCR swab test method. Although these tests are reliable and accurate for diagnostic purposes, the tests were conducted only in hospital settings and the results of these tests took a minimum of 3 days. 

There were other tests that were carried out as well. These tests included the analysis of other specimens. However, the COVID-19 pandemic was announced in the era of the latest technological advancements. As a result of which, there were further many tests developed for easy diagnosis.

covid 19 delta variant test
covid 19 delta variant test

Evolution of COVID-19 testing

In the long run, the residents of this globe experienced several variants of COVID-19. These variants were a threat to every individual’s health such as the infamous Delta variant and Omicron variant. The Delta variant hit the population in the late 2020s while Omicron’s first case was detected on November 24, 2021, in South Africa. By the time Omicron was discovered, the vaccines for Coronavirus were already available to the population. 

Furthermore, many more diagnostic tests were also introduced. The tests evolved from only hospital settings to point-of-care platforms. These assist in collecting the specimen in non-hospital settings. 

Another major test that was introduced was the rapid COVID test kid. This rapid antigen test was prominent and gained global acceptance by January 2022. 

This test provided a number of benefits for the people. 

  1. The test is carried out beyond the hospital laboratory limits.  
  2. The results obtained will be in a matter of minutes.

Global outbreak and rising demand for the rapid test for COVID-19 variants

People are aiming to fill up their drawers with covid rapid tests. The stocks of rapid tests are drained throughout the world. It is not just the residences of the earth facing the scarcity of rapid tests. Hospitals and clinics are in the midst of crisis. They are facing huge demand for the rapid test for Covid-19 variants from the population and there is nothing that can be done about it at the time. 

Hospitals, pharmacies, and even online stores are running low on rapid test stocks, or becoming, at long last, excessively high priced. There is not just one reason for the insufficiency of the rapid tests. For instance, numerous citizens of the United States are unable to purchase rapid tests. This is mostly due to low stocks, as the markets always seem to be out of stock. And often because the citizens are not able to buy them in quantities due to the price. Reportedly, the price is approximately $25 for a packet of two while in other areas, the supply of rapid tests is a bigger issue. 

What is the reason behind not manufacturing enough tests for the population? Bob Kocher reportedly said that the reason behind the shortage of supply was the failure to foresee the public demand for the product. It was reported that Abbott also had shut down its two production lines and closed its manufacturing plant. 

Besides this, many people are blaming the government, (FDA to be exact) for its slow approval of the tests earlier in the pandemic. Considering all reasons mentioned, it can be said that the demands for the rapid tests were very high as compared to the production or supply of the tests, as a result of which the population faced such shortage of the product causing many problems for them.

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Us bans russian oil imports and suspends trade with belarus

During a session of the Senate, a proposed bill suggested revoking Russia and Belarus’s position from the “Most-favored Nation Status” or “Permanent Normal trade relations (PNTR)” following Russia’s attack in Ukraine. The US bans Russian oil imports as a direct result of the Russia-Ukraine war. 

US legislators unanimously voted upon the motion to suspend trade ties with Russia and ban oil imports. The Chamber passed another bill that banned supplies such as oil, gas, and coal from the Russian state.

Currently, the bills are headed toward President Joe Biden’s office, as the House of Representatives signed off on the amendments to both bills this past Thursday.    

US BANS RUSSIAN OIL IMPORTS: THE IMPACT ON REGIONAL TRADE INDUSTRY

Abandoning the standard trade ties will straightaway affect the prices of multiple imports from Russia. Once they pass the bill, it will open doors for sanctions, leading to further increases in the prices of imports from Russia. 

According to Column 2 of the US Harmonized Tariff Schedule, the new rates will be disclosed for the upcoming imports from Russia. Other than Russia, only two countries, Cuba and North Korea, do not have normal trade relations with the US; countries that aren’t on the list have to pay a different tariff. 

Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, Kevin Brady addressed the house floor this Thursday and summed that the energy import ban will impact 60% of Russian imports to the United States. The previous sanctions banned around 40% of the Imports. Combined provisions will knock off 100% of Russian imports, eliminating any US financial aid to Russia amid the Ukraine war.   

The trade will also affect US industries significantly. For instance, the Steelmakers in the United States depend heavily upon the imported ferroalloys from Russia that are used in making steel. Banning Russian imports will highly impact their manufacturing and production operations, resulting in increased prices.

Huge companies such as Cleveland-Cliffs and Nucor Corporation have come out and shown concern as they depend severely on Russian Iron ore imports and metal scrap products. In a statement released by Nucor they stated; “If political conditions in those countries or their relations with the United States or each other further deteriorate, or such countries were to become subject to sanctions or other restrictions or interruptions in trade with the United States, it may materially affect the price and availability of scrap and scrap substitutes”. 

Russia exported over $11.9 Billion worth of products to the United States in 2020. The exports mainly included refined Petroleum worth around $4.62B, the other major export was Platinum, which was estimated at $2.16B, and Crude Petroleum exports were estimated to be $979M; most of the exports will remain unaffected by the sanctions and bills. Palladium, platinum, and fertilizers will not significantly shift prices. 

CONCLUSION 

The Biden administration is looking determined to keep cutting off financial ties with Russia. Congress approved the bill that was presented by Joe Biden almost a month ago, addressing the ban on Russian imports. The Senate changed and updated a few of the bits but, at large, accepted what it is. This bill will provide Joe Biden with the open hand to further increase the rates on Russian imports. 

Furthermore, we are receiving more news regarding Human rights violations in Ukraine by Russian troops. These developments have caused the removal of Russia from the Humans Rights Council. We can only expect the tension to keep rising. Also, the United States to keep putting more financial and international pressure on Russia through international sanctions and a ban on imports.

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How did lowe’s home improvement modify its logistics network during pandemic?

Lowe’s started as a small hardware store in North Carolina, USA and it has now become a household name. From a local hardware store to becoming one of the most well-renowned home improvement retailers in the world, Lowe’s home improvement worldwide prominence has not come by chance or luck. They have proven time and time again, that their ability to adapt to different environments and fulfill customer requirements has been a crucial part of their success. 

In a recent statement, Lowe’s Executive Vice president of Supply Chain, Don Frieson stated that the two most integral reasons for Lowe’s success are; 

  1. Leveraging Coastal Facilities 
  2. Making a shift to a market delivery model

The toughest and the most profitable season for home improvement retailers is the springs. Springs push property owners in large numbers to seek out new tools, utensils, materials, and devices so they can prepare for the season. As the demand increased, most of the companies that were already short on supplies, failed to meet the customers’ demand. This our Lowe’s under enormous pressure, because not only were they catering to their usual market but now they also had to provide supplies for the other customer of other companies. At the end of the day, customers had to buy products from somewhere, right?

Lowe’s home improvement’s logistics network & the crisis at hand

To encounter this challenge, Lowe’s had to do a little renovation of their own. Don Frison stated that; “Just like any other company out there, we’ve had to make the right pivots to survive in this environment”. As most companies adapted a hybrid model or completely shifted to the remote work model, Covid-19 and the lockdown became the reason for a lot of new customers and generated sales for Lowe’s.  

Although it increased sales, it put enormous pressure on production. It was already suffering from an unstable inventory, and warehouse operations, as well as the extra load, seemed like too much to handle. 

To overcome the problem on hand, the company decided to expand its logistics operations and altered towards a more productive and efficient home delivery approach, along with other tactful steps. They also increased the cost of sales compared to the previous fiscal year. 

How did lowe’s manage the product shortage and other odds?

To ensure product availability, Lowe’s formed a combination of regional and flatbed distribution centers. This assisted in moving a large number of imports to the warehouses and the customers. Furthermore, the company has accumulated a few more practices since the pandemic, some of which go beyond these distribution networks.

When we look at the numbers, the progress of Lowe’s become quite evident. 

  • They have inaugurated 15 regional distribution centers, that pick up the products from vendors and deliver them to the stores or in some instances directly to the customers 
  • They have also added 15 flatbed networks, that deliver special products which require, delicate handling
  • The number of stores, that flatbed, and regional distribution centers covers has gone up to 115 
  • 35% of the Company’s product was shipped directly from the vendors, and the larger chunk, 65% was purchased and delivered via its distribution centers 

They further enhanced the operations by accounting for six new cross-dock delivery terminals to meet the last-mile shipments. They have also opened 4 Bulk distribution networks to manage huge merchandise such as heavy appliances. The company is also utilizing coastal holding which allows the stores to receive products early and minimizes the delivery time.    

Delivering the products from warehouses to the retailers 

To enhance the supply chain. Lowe’s is introducing a new system that will minimize the number of mid-parties and build a more direct supplying network for the customers. 

A Senior member of Lowe’s said that their current delivery system is not as sufficient as it should be, he added; “each store functioning as its distribution node for big and bulky products”. 

The incapability of the current delivery model made Lowe’s launched a new system. In this model, they completely skipped stores while delivering goods to the customers.  The turnaround time changed rapidly, now they could deliver products within the same day, or within just 4-5 hours to be precise. After its success, they have applied this model at various locations and the results have been remarkable. They have had improved operating margins, increased appliance sales, better inventory, fewer damages, and higher customer satisfaction rate due to prompt deliveries”.

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HIKING PRICES: HOW DOES INFLATION AFFECT SMALL BUSINESSES?

To understand how small businesses are being tormented. First, we need to get grip on what exactly is inflation and how it works? Inflation estimates the increase in the price of goods and services over a specific period. It often occurs when the production cost increases. Demand is another factor contributing to inflation because consumers’ demand for products and services makes them vulnerable and pay more for the respective product or service. The consequences of inflation can be seen in many areas. For example, it can be seen affecting the economy, businesses, big or small, exchange rate, unemployment, stocks, wage, and even the common man. But now, let’s find out how does inflation affect small businesses, and what measures are taken to combat its outcomes?

effects of inflation on small business
effects of inflation on small business

HOW DOES INFLATION AFFECT SMALL BUSINESSES?

Every small business, anywhere in the world is affected by the surge in inflation. Inflation is by far number 1 on the list of concerns of the owners of small businesses. Small businesses are taking all their expenses into account just as they steer for high inflation. To battle inflation, many small businesses are compelled to increase costs, slim down their profit margins and raise their prices. Inflation is not just targeting a specific sector, the consequences of a surge in inflation are being endured by every small business. Irrespective of size, sector, region of the country, and scale every small business is impacted. A survey was conducted by the NFIB, it was found that approximately 22% of respondents reported that inflation. As a result of both inflation and the pandemic, it is reported that all small businesses have increased their prices by 15% – 30%. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the inflation delineated in 2021, was twice more than what was evident in 2020.

RISE IN THE PRICES OF SMALL BUSINESSES

As stated, small businesses are compelled to raise their prices in order to combat inflation. The most recent event where my example can be practically observed is the COVID-19 pandemic. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak of Public Health Emergency, internationally on 30th January 2020. Since then, it was a very challenging period for small businesses established all over the world. The outbreak of coronavirus was not just a health crisis, but also a major economic shock, and that too, internationally. Because of the pandemic, the production cost reached its peak, as a consequence of which, inflation occurred. Since the cost of raw materials for products escalated, the owners of small businesses also had to increase their prices to balance the equilibrium of their profit and loss scale.

According to the article written by Thaddeus Swanek, to cope with inflation, an estimated 67% of small businesses have increased their prices. The whole situation of the pandemic was a huge and demanding hurdle for the owners of small businesses. Just as they were about to recover from the pandemic, a surge of inflation came their way. Neil Bradley executive vice president and chief policy officer at the U.S Chamber of Commerce said, “Having survived the pandemic, now small business owners are being hit with surging inflation. It limits their purchasing power and forces small businesses to raise their prices and absorb higher costs within already thin margins.” Many small business owners’ reactions to increased inflation are increasing the prices for the consumers.

CONCLUSION

Taking everything mentioned into account, the rise in inflation means a rise in prices. The owners of small businesses have no option but to increase their price rates to combat inflation and manage their profit margins. It is evident by many reports that during the pandemic, when inflation spiked, the rates of every small business increased by 15% – 30%.

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CMA CGM Not Accepting Plastic Scrap to Stop Plastic Pollution and Its Effects

We all are quite familiar with plastic pollution and its effects, so just let me give you a quick brief and we’ll move on to the main subject.

Plastic pollution is the accretion of plastic objects and particles in the Soil’s atmosphere that adversely affects humans, wildlife, and their environment. Plastics that act as pollutants are categorized by size into micro or macro wreckage.

Some of the most common types of plastic scrap are:

  • PET or Polyethylene Terephthalate. 
  • HDPE or High-Density Polyethylene. 
  • PVC or Polyvinyl Chloride.
  • LDPE or Low-Density Polyethylene. 
  • PP or Polypropylene. 
  • PS or Polystyrene. 
  • Other Plastics.

Plastic scrap has become a major problem for the world. Approximately 275 million metric tons of plastic waste are produced annually, and up to 12 million tons leak into oceans, wreaking havoc on living and ecologies (CIEL, 2020). The result is an estimated $13 billion in annual environmental damage to sea systems.

CMA CGM’S DECISION TO NOT ACCEPT PLASTIC SCRAPS

CMA CGM will not be accepting plastic waste onboard any CMA CGM Group’s vessels starting April 15, according to a customer notice. They made the initial announcement on its decision to ban plastic waste in February during the One Ocean Summit. Also, they had started this “landmark decision” would become effective from June First. The ban on transporting plastic waste on its ships “will prevent this type of waste from being exported to destinations where sorting, recycling or recovery cannot be assured,” according to the February statement.

CMA CGM holds the position of one of the most famous ocean carriers in the world. Now, they will no longer export plastic waste. Their decision to ban plastic waste onboard their ships comes at a time when sustainability and environment-friendly practices are in high demand from customers and regulators. U.S. plastic scrap exports fell by 11% in 2021 with 557 million kilograms of plastic scrap exported compared to 629 million kilograms in 2020, according to U.S. export data.

Their ban on plastic scrap won’t be an easy project. Material is often labeled using HS code 3915 but that doesn’t stop differences in how shipments are labeled. For a better understanding of controlling the regulatory procedures when shipping plastic scrap, a shipper could use HS code 3920 which labels a product as plastic instead of plastic scrap, according to Resource Recycling. Such false coding would allow the banned commodity to be shipped. 

Meanwhile, the United Nations Environment Assembly is working on tackling global plastic waste on an international level. Resolution from the UNEA, released last month, “Sets the goal to present a detailed treaty by the end of 2024 to further regulate international trade in plastics.”

plastic pollution and its effects

TAKE A LOT AT SOME OF THE REASONS IN LENGTH

One of the main causes of pollution that happens in the ocean includes open-air storage and the absence of a processing structure for plastic waste that does not actively get recycled or reused. As part of its initiative, the company has said that it will prevent this type of waste from being exported to destinations where categorization, recycling, or recovery cannot be assured. However, the main reason to ban plastic scrap is that the most visible impacts of plastic wreckages are the digestion, suffocation, and entanglement of hundreds of sea species. 

Several species of marine life such as seabirds, whales, fish, and turtles mistake plastic waste for prey; most then die of starvation as their stomachs become filled with plastic. They also suffer from lacerations, infections, reduced ability to swim, and internal injuries. Floating plastics also help transport invasive aquatic species.

CONCLUSION:

Waste plastic also impacts human life, microplastics have been found in tap water, beer, and salt and are present in all samples collected in the world’s oceans, including the Wintry. Numerous chemicals used in the production of plastic materials are known to be hazardous and to interfere with the body’s endocrine system, causing progressive, reproductive, neurological, and immune disorders in both humans and wildlife. Newly, microplastics were found in human placentas but more research is needed to determine if this is a widespread problem.

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Pandemic Impact on Supply Chain in Shanghai & Rising Global Concerns

As the number of Covid-19 cases started to decrease around the world, China became one of the first countries to recover from the pandemic and it seemed like things were getting back to normal. But unfortunately, China’s recovery from the pandemic couldn’t last long and Shanghai, which is one of the most prominent cities in the East Asian Country, became the new epicentre of the rising Covid cases. Now, let’s learn more about the pandemic impact on supply chain in China.

How has the pandemic affected supply chain in China?

Even after implementing a successful strategy of “Zero-Covid”, China is once again in a challenging state. To bring down the severity of the pandemic, Shanghai is facing a massive lockdown that creates huge uncertainty in the supply chain.

During this month, the number of cases has risen to 26,000 a day and that’s a huge number considering the previous situation in China, which was quite under control. According to news sources, some areas of the city are starting to open despite the increasing number of cases, but the city at large remains under lockdown.     

The closure of Shanghai has brought major disruption to the supply chain, the costs are continuously on the rise and transportation of goods has become extremely difficult, and all the trucking operations are almost on hold. The disruption in supplies in the factories is slowing down the workflow, and as the numbers increase, the experts and analysts are getting more and more concerned about the persistence of the global supply chain.          

Increasing Supply Chain Problems in Shanghai

As the covid is spreading in Shanghai, it is getting more difficult for truck drivers to manoeuvre through the city. More checkpoints are being positioned verifying the covid-tests of the drivers and they need to get tested every 24 hours which is really frantic. Conducting these many tests without proper logistics is turning out to be more chaotic.  

Head of Network Operations at Flexport, Derek Bushaw stated that “Trucking is the lifeblood of the first and last mile”, he further added that “The first mile for the factories is that inbound delivery of components, and whether those are imported or domestically sourced, that’s still a challenge because it depends on trucking.”

There’s been a huge decline in the efficiency of shipping companies in the past month, the efficiency has dropped to over 30% because of the deficiency of trucking transport and logistics, which is detrimental to the global supply chain. The hindrances within the city of Shanghai are forcing a lot of cargo companies to end their operations and leave the city. 

To sustain production, Shanghai has implemented a “closed-loop system” which means that the workers spend all day in the factories and never leave the place. It is working so far but experts predict that they’ll eventually run out of supplies and they’ll have to open up the city for imports and supplies. 

Massive manufacturing plants such as Apple’s supplier Pegatron have announced that it has paused its operations in Shanghai due to harsh Covid-19 restrictions. Well, it is expected that the restrictions will ease up by the end of this month. Experts believe that if the disruptions continue till the end of this month, we’ll see a major increase in the price of commodities.  

impact of pandemic on supply chain
impact of pandemic on supply chain

Instability hazards: huge Impact of pandemic on supply chain

The biggest question here is that what guarantees the prevention of another lockdown? And if we’re being honest there’s no certain answer. Head of APAC Strategy at FAO Global, Cameron Johnson said that regardless of the future operations, the current lockdown will cause the product prices to rise at least 4-5 percent.  

Alongside Shanghai, the neighboring city of Kunshan is also facing strict lockdowns and restrictions, which is also damaging the total output and productivity of several factories. Similar to Shanghai, Kunshan is home to gigantic automotive and electronic suppliers that provide supplies to companies such as Apple and Tesla. So, the consequences will be worldwide and drastic.

Jena Santoro (Manager of intelligence solutions for the Americas at Everstream Analytics) believes that this is just the starting of this outbreak, she further added that this situation will only elevate regardless of the lockdown, and it’ll most likely be the next big covid-19 situation. 

Conclusion

The biggest issue here is that the future is uncertain, and planners can’t formulate a strategy. We can only wait and hope that the situation gets better and clearer as time progresses because otherwise, it doesn’t look that good for the production houses in Shanghai and Kunshan.

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Top 8 Technology Trends of logistics and supply chain management.

emerging-trends-in-logistics

The constantly increasing global demand for autonomous solutions has increased the investment rate in supply chain technologies to a great extent. With the changing trends, the supply chain leaders now perceive technology as a competitive advantage as it would help in bringing long-term value to the organizations. For instance, freight businesses are taking a step forward in adapting technology trends in logistics and supply chain management.

In the post-Covid world, the supply chain leaders need to adapt and follow a mindset that seeks to exploit the benefits from the digitalization and disrupt the current operating supply chain models. Therefore, following the top most supply chain technology trends is now a critical factor towards embracing and moving towards long-term change. 

emerging-trends-in-logistics

Supply Chain Governance and Security 

With global risk events constantly rising, the breach of security impacts organizations on a digital and physical level due to which supply chain governance and security has now become an increasingly impactful macro trend. Therefore, it is important for privacy as well as data and cyber security in order to sustain the advanced tracking and tracing solutions, smart packaging, and next-gen RFID and near field communication capabilities. 

Edge Computing and Analytics 

The demand for automated decision making and processing on low-latency is done via edge computing as its growth corresponds with the devices for proliferation of Internet of things (IoT). Making its way into the manufacturing industry, the processing and analysis of data in edge computing is done near the source or collection point. Over time, most organizations are moving towards driverless forklifts for the warehouse as the heavy equipment sellers use edge computing to detect in case any part needs to be replaced. 

Artificial Intelligence 

Consisting of a toolbox with various technology options, artificial intelligence (AI) helps the organizations in understanding all the complex content, improve human performance, engaging with people and handling the routine tasks. With artificial intelligence in hand, supply chain leaders can effectively solve challenges existing around data silos and governance. Through AI, the visibility and integration is improved through all the networks built across stakeholders that used to be remote. 

Hyper-Automation 

A framework designed to mix and match various technologies to the best of its interest, hyper-automation enhancing the historic legacy platforms with newly developed and advanced tools and planned investments. The term may have a different meaning for different organizations, if used and implemented correctly hyper-automation can help in broader collaboration amongst various domains so as to work as an integrator. 

Digital Supply Chain Twin 

Derived from all the possible relevant data through the supply chain and the operating environment, a digital supply chain twin (DSCT) helps in representing the physical supply chain. It is a digital theme upon which all the local as well as end-to-end decisions are based and helps in describing the constantly increasing connection between the digital and physical networks. With DSCT, organizations can enhance and improve situational awareness in both aspects. 

Continuous Intelligence 

Continuous intelligence is considered as one of the best opportunities for supply chain leaders to enhance and accelerate the digital transformation for their companies. It leverages the data processing ability of a computer to improve, compared to humans. Through this the supply chain leaders can look into the data being processed in order to identify and take actions actively as per the analysis. 

5G Network 

The 5G networks are a huge step forward due to the capabilities of its processor to enhance data speed. Due to the pervasive and all-rounder nature of 5G networks, the potential of its supply chain is also boosted, which helps in minimizing the latency and improving the real-time visibility and internet of things (IoT) capabilities for the company. 

Immersive Experience 

With the potential to fundamentally influence the trajectory of the supply chain, immersive experience is based upon virtual, amplified and mixed reality. The human capabilities are augmented by the new interaction model as the organizations see the benefits of bringing on-board new employees via immersive experience and training to build up a safe and reliable virtual environment. 

Nonetheless, while operating on a larger scale the visibility on a micro-level is sometimes blurred out for companies, which is why opting for supply chain technology trends can help the organization enhance its process and build a closer relationship with its customers.