Is Walmart Adopting a More Responsive Supply Chain Strategy?

Is Walmart Adopting a More Responsive Supply Chain Strategy?

June 10, 2019

Walmart is starting next-day delivery to catch up with Amazon.

Walmart is expected to have higher costs since all items are not stocked in a fulfillment center closest to the customer.  To reduce these inventory costs, the company will seek to stock items in regional fulfillment centers based on local market needs, and will impose a minimum dollar amount of $35 for orders.

The program rolled out to Phoenix and Las Vegas first, with Southern California next in the lineup.


Video Spotlight:


This post is based on the CNN article, Walmart is rolling out next-day delivery. Look out, Amazon, by Nathaniel Meyersohn, May 14, 2019; and the YouTube videos, Walmart launches free next-day delivery by Fox Business, May 14, 2019; and How Walmart is taking on Amazon, by CNN Business, May 17, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / sirtravelalot

Discussion Questions:

1. What impact does next-day delivery speed have on smaller retailers?

Guidance: Students should recognize that customers are expecting next-day delivery as an order qualifier in the future.  If delivery speed becomes the domain of the major retailers, what can a Continue reading

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LoopStore Reduces Packaging, Recycling Reclaims Styrofoam

LoopStore Reduces Packaging, Recycling Reclaims Styrofoam

In recent recycling news, Terracycle launched LoopStore.com on May 21, 2019. Terracycle’s LoopStore business model is fashioned as a return to the “milkman delivery service”. Customers purchase stainless steel containers and pay for shipping. The containers are then filled with items such as Tide or cereal.  The customer returns the empty containers for refills.

The idea is to remove single use packaging from the process.  Many well-known companies have signed on to this business model already.

In other recycling news, chemical recycling by a handful of plants such as Agilyx in Portland, Oregon, offers a way of reclaiming dirty plastic and Styrofoam before they hit the world’s oceans. Chemical recycling is used on items which cannot be recycled in traditional recycling plants.


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This post is based on the CBS News article, New service sells brand-name products without plastic containers, by Meg Oliver, May 15, 2019; and the YouTube videos, New service helps consumers cut down on plastics, by CBS News, May 15, 2019, and Chemical recycling could be an industry game changer, by CBS This Continue reading

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California’s Ag Labor Shortages Lead to Automation

California’s Ag Labor Shortages Lead to Automation

May 19, 2019

California’s farmers, who produce almost half of the nation’s fresh fruits and vegetables and over 90% of tree nuts, are increasingly mechanizing operations to cope with ongoing labor shortages and increasing costs of labor.

In particular, mechanized planters, weeders, and harvesters, along with specialized tractor attachments are gaining popularity.  Robotic farm technology is also being developed to harvest crops like strawberries and grapes.

One other potential way to address the labor shortage lies in improving the cumbersome temporary visa program that allows people from other countries to enter legally for the purpose of filling jobs that American workers don’t want to do.


Video Spotlight: Farms Face A Severe Labor Shortage And These Robots Are Here To Help


This post is based on the CNBC article, California farmers increasingly turning to mechanization due to labor shortages, says survey, by Jeff Daniels, May 1, 2019; and the YouTube video, Farms Face A Severe Labor Shortage And These Robots Are Here To Help, by CNBC, March 8, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / tanger

Discussion Questions:

1. What are some of the pros and cons of increased use of mechanization?

Guidance: For larger farm operations with the capital Continue reading

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