The Supply Chain Headache – Here’s How We Can Help
Direct to consumer packaging, (DTC) especially for people with overseas suppliers, is in short supply and the situation is sure to get worse before it improves.
If you are a regular reader of our blogs, you know we have been warning customers and friends of the supply chain problems we saw developing since late last year. It is good to see politicians and national print, TV, and web media finally talking about it, but the signs have all been there for some time.
Packaging Supply Problem Indicators
Signs pointing to this crisis include:
- Long lead times and in some cases, shortages of packaging supplies.
- Fast rising pricing including an unprecedented third price increase within 12 months, on corrugated, paperboard, and other paper products.
- Skyrocketing freight costs, especially on certain, lower traffic routes
- Equipment shortages of containers, trailers, and tractors
- Labor shortages of drivers and terminal/dock personnel
Combine these logistical and transportation problems with the predictable 4th quarter annual surge and you have a combination that is certain to result in much higher pricing and much lower availability. Fortunately for our customers and for us, we started taking corrective and preventative action, early this year.
What we have done to better serve our customers
- Expanded our manufacturing network so we can manufacture boxes closer to where you need them, saving time and money.
- We have vetted and added additional freight shippers to our list of approved carriers
- Modified how we run and palletize shipments to maximize cubes and minimize shipping cost.
- Set up product availability programs with “integrated” plants that make their own corrugated rather than sheet plants. Both types bring specific advantages to the table, so a combination is immensely helpful and provide more options.
- When possible, we have worked with customers to provide better quality but thinner board so more products can be shipped and stored for less money.
We have always had high quality standards for our manufacturing partners, so adding these new criteria has proven relatively easy. There are many fine quality companies out there manufacturing excellent e-commerce shipper boxes and mailer envelopes. Our job has always been to help make them available to our customers and clients.
Please contact us or feel free to call us at 630-551-1700 to speak to one of our trained packaging advisors. Or feel free to ask for me, Dennis Salazar. I may be CEO but for over forty years, I have never turned down an opportunity to work with and speak directly with one of our customers.