CAI Transportation Blog

17 Oct, 2018

What international shippers should know about the recent Emergency Bunker Surcharge (EBS)


“We are introducing an Emergency Bunker Surcharge (EBS) as a necessary action to continue offering sustainable services to clients,” Maersk announced on their website on May 2018. Other shipping lines like Cosco, CMA CGM, and Hapag-Lloyd have followed suit.

The heat of rising crude oil costs is being felt throughout the global supply chain. In ocean freight, bunker prices have spiked over 20% since April 2018. Carriers are struggling to find ways to cover their losses and have turned to emergency bunker surcharges. But are these surcharges a sustainable solution to the problem?

In this article, we’ll explain the surcharge, the reason behind its implementation, as well as how these surcharges will affect shippers in the global supply chain.

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10 Oct, 2018

The case for quarterly pricing


The economy, consumer confidence, regulations, and capacity/driver availability have created a challenging time for shippers to secure capacity and stabilize pricing. Prior strategies that used annual bids to leverage freight volume with pricing were a great success, but with this recent shift, these plans have yielded mixed results.

So, what can a shipper do to ensure capacity with a reliable range of pricing and still meet their customer’s delivery expectations? It is not only a good time to review who is servicing your customers, but it’s also a great time to review how you secure your pricing.

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03 Oct, 2018

What shrinking warehouse capacity means for shippers + how 3PLs can help


Available warehouse capacity has been on a downward trend for 32 quarters in a row. Companies are looking for bigger, smarter, and more flexible warehouses—but they aren't being built fast enough to meet the booming e-commerce demand.

Building new warehouses is difficult because real estate availability is often rare in urban areas where demand is highest. Meanwhile, existing warehouses are less tech-savvy and slow to upgrade their operations. To serve today’s consumers, warehouses will need to evolve into an intelligent component of the entire global supply chain. In the era of ecommerce, an agile supply chain is critical to maintain a competitive edge.

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27 Sep, 2018

Cybersecurity in supply chains: Are your systems safe?


The collaborative nature of today’s supply chain makes its data more vulnerable than ever. Shippers have to share critical information with an average of 10 other parties before they can complete their routes. Low industry margins make paying for proper cyber protection difficult.

With the digitization of data and strong growth, the logistics industry is an attractive target for hackers. In fact, cyber attacks in logistics rose by 200% in 2017 and will continue to rise in the future.

Let's take a deeper look at why cyber security is a priority and what you can do to safeguard your supply chain.

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20 Sep, 2018

How to choose the best international 3PL partner


In this growing global economy, the demand for affordable and reliable shipping capacity is at a record high. Finding the right international logistics partner will help you navigate the world of advanced logistic technologies, new international trade agreements, and the increasing complexity of global supply chain operations.

Many shipping managers gravitate towards 3PLs with the lowest rates. Price, though an important factor, can mislead you if it’s your primary consideration. Choosing the wrong partner will cost you more in the form of expensive delays, reputation, and time re-routing shipments.

Picking the right international 3PL partner will save you money while making your job easier. To assist you in your evaluation process, here are five important attributes to look for in your next international logistics partner.

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12 Sep, 2018

Timing is everything: logistics strategies in the food supply chain, part two


In last week’s article, we looked at some of the challenges facing food suppliers, especially when it comes to transporting their products to consumers safely. Factors like foodborne illness and spoilage compress the timeline for the safe shipment of food products and highlight the importance of strict controls and smart planning.

Between strategic communication, new technological developments, and updated distribution philosophies, here are some of the ways food producers are adapting to get their products from their origin to consumers’ plates safely and on time:

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06 Sep, 2018

Timing is everything: logistics strategies in the food supply chain, part one


For most of human history, finding an adequate food supply was a daily struggle. The vast majority of our ancestors spent their whole lives in pursuit of securing enough to eat— either farming their land to feed their own families, or traveling continually to hunt and gather enough food. The question of where the next meal would come from was a constant one, and famines had the potential to decimate entire civilizations. For this and a variety of other reasons, the world’s total population stayed under one billion until 1804.

However, due to a number of life-saving developments— including better medical care and more reliable food production practices— the world’s population has exploded in the past two centuries. In just 214 years, the human population of the planet has risen to an estimated 7.4 billion, and it is projected to reach 10 billion by 2050.

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30 Aug, 2018

How to retain talent in the supply chain


In the midst of a booming global economy, many companies may find themselves in need of additional smart supply chain talent to help manage growth. There’s just one major problem: the strong economy means low unemployment, making it more challenging than ever to attract enough qualified job candidates.

While several universities have started to offer degree programs tailored to a career in logistics or supply chain operations, the number of graduates isn’t keeping pace with the industry-wide need for strong candidates. To make matters worse, experienced Baby Boomers with deep knowledge of the industry are starting to retire.

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29 Aug, 2018

The state of the logistics industry in 2018


The logistics industry has experienced strong growth this year, but a rising volume of cargo brings capacity issues that will cut into many companies’ margins.

Let's take a look at what’s causing these issues—and what strategies you can use to succeed in the second half of 2018 and beyond.

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22 Aug, 2018

5 proactive ways to build a safer, stronger supply chain


Changes in the way companies operate today make supply chain management even more crucial in the global economy. Technological developments, shifting political and economic landscapes, and other factors may push organizations to make changes to their supply chain practices. But if these decisions aren’t made with long-term sustainability in mind, they can hurt companies more than they help. With regulators and consumers increasingly concerned with supply chain safety, it’s more important than ever to pay close attention to the quality of goods, waste management, environmental impact, and transportation security.

If health and safety aren’t a daily consideration in your supply chain, it’s time to make some changes. Let’s look at five proactive ways to create a safer, stronger supply chain.

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