Plan Ahead For Brexit

Plan Ahead For Brexit

October 29, 2018

Brexit poses multiple challenges to supply chain management.  These challenges include changes to customs and tariffs, legal implications regarding contracts and intellectual property, lead times, and contractual incentives.

Firms that plan ahead with a variety of scenarios in mind stand the best chance of gaining first mover advantages as the new supply chains are put into place in the next six months.

This post is based on the Supply Chain Digital article, How can businesses prepare their supply chains for Brexit?, by Marcus Lawrence, October 11, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / worradirek.

Discussion Questions:

1. How can firms subjected to Brexit in the United Kingdom maintain short lead times for imported inventory?

Guidance: Students should search the internet for articles about Brexit and the potential issues with imports/exports.  Students could then brainstorm in a class discussion about ways to maintain short lead times.  The discussion may include the idea of maintaining larger inventories in the UK or EU to overcome the delays caused by Brexit.

1. Will an efficient or a responsive supply chain potentially be impacted the worst in Brexit? Why?

Guidance: Review responsive and efficient supply chains.  Students should have a Continue reading

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Robot Farmers

Robot Farmers

October 23, 2018

The start-up company, Iron Ox, is working to deliver robotically grown vegetables.  They have planted their first robot farm about 25 miles south of San Francisco in a warehouse.  They intend to sell their vegetables to local restaurants later this year, and to supermarkets early next year.

Their first farm is in a warehouse forcing them to use artificial lights, and thus substantial energy.  But future robot farms will be in greenhouses to reduce energy costs.  Their plan is to locate these robot farms close to metropolitan areas.


Video Spotlight: Watch robots grow food without farmers


This post is based on The Daily Times article, Meet the farmers of the future: Robots, by Michael Liedtke, September 28, 2018, and the YouTube video, Watch robots grow food without farmers, by CNBC, October 3, 2018. Image source: Shutterstock / Beros919.

Discussion Questions:

1. What benefits does the use of robotics have for the farm?

Guidance: The biggest advantage is the reduction in labor.  The cost of farm labor is rising, and finding workers is getting more difficult.  Until recently, many of the workers on U.S. farms were not in the U.S. legally. Continue reading

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