Trucker shortages affecting supply chains

Trucker shortages affecting supply chains

July 19, 2018

OM in the News has previously posted about the national trucker shortage. The saga continues, and looks to worsen: there are 63,000 positions unfilled this year, and the number is expected to more than double in the future.

This is a challenging problem, especially since almost every item that is sold in the U.S. is transported by truck at some point.  Trucking companies are raising wages to the $60,000 – $70,000 range, with full benefits and signing bonuses, even for new trucking school graduates.  Those ready to work are snapped up quickly.

The dangerous and demanding nature of trucking makes it difficult to attract qualified workers despite the promise of generous compensation.  Rising wages are being passed along to consumers as transportation costs increase distribution costs and force companies to raise prices.

Delivery delays have become common, affecting inventory management and product availability.

This post is based on the Washington Post article, America’s severe trucker shortage could undermine the prosperous economy, by Heather Long, June 28, 2018. Image source: Rouzes/Getty Images.

Discussion Questions:

1. How does the trucking shortage impact manufacturers or other businesses?

Guidance: Trucker shortages mean businesses are finding it difficult to find Continue reading

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Budding New Business for LEDs

Budding New Business for LEDs

June 4, 2018

Philips LED bulbs with specially tailored light recipes are helping Dutch growers produce roses with longer, heavier stems and bigger buds.

These features command higher prices, so the new roses hold real promise for the indoor horticulture industry.  Philips’ new toplights which are being used to power the growth of the supersized flowers are very energy efficient, and the company guarantees they will last 35,000 hours.

Tunable LED lighting is increasingly being used to improve the appearance, potency, smell, and taste of plants, including fruits and vegetables.  According to a recent market research forecast from Technavio, the global indoor farming market will grow nearly 20 percent over the next four years.

This post is based on the LEDs Magazine article, Philips Says LEDs Make a Rosier Rose, by Mark Halper, April 17, 2018; and the Monitor Daily article, Global Indoor Farming Technologies Market to Grow 20% by 2022 (no author cited), April 30, 2018. Image sources: © 68/Ocean/Corbis; choness/Getty Images.

Discussion Questions:

1. How do advances in LED lighting technology stand to impact global food availability, sustainability, productivity, and quality?

Guidance: This amazing, sustainable technology allows food to be grown indoors in urban areas, increasing the Continue reading

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