Harriet Mills

Recent Posts

Drayage Woes Tied to Port Congestion

Posted by Harriet Mills on Sep 10, 2021 11:18:16 AM

Never before has the American consumer needed so much of everything, and needed it so immediately. Partially caused by the shortages at the beginning of the pandemic, and also driven by people working from home and shopping online, consumer behavior has changed drastically over the past year. 

News coverage of the massive congestion at U.S. ports has made its way from niche industry publications to mainstream news media. Why? Because supply chains hold the strings to what we eat, drink, wear, live in, and consume. In the past six months, a rapid series of disruptions have created a colossal problem for both B2B and B2C channels, especially at the ports.

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Tags: Shipper News, 3PL News, Port and Drayage Shipping

Record Heat Puts Cold Chain Shippers on Alert

Posted by Harriet Mills on Jul 16, 2021 3:16:26 PM

Shipping temperature-controlled freight can be a risky business even on the best of days, but when outside temperatures soar to record-breaking highs, (most recently putting 13 million Americans under a severe heat advisory), it is time to pay extra attention to your cold freight shipments.

The past month was the hottest June in North America on record. In recent days, California, Nevada, and Arizona all surpassed previous record temperatures. It has been so hot in the Pacific Northwest that roads are actually buckling. What does this mean for shippers and carriers?

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Tags: Cold LTL, refrigerated freight services, truckload freight shipping

Shipping Cross-Border to Canada, Eh?

Posted by Harriet Mills on Jun 17, 2021 4:37:16 PM

 

Cross-border freight movement between the United States, Canada, and Mexico was affected by the global pandemic just as much as the rest of the world. In 2020, overall freight was down by 13% compared with 2019. If you are looking at just truck Canadian truck freight, it declined by 10% during that same timeframe.

But in 2021, things seem to be getting back on track. The concept of reshoring and near-shoring has gained popularity after commodity shortages along with inventory deficits spurred on a sourcing frenzy to find vendors closer to home. 2020 taught us the full risks of offshoring in the supply chain, and it has many companies making changes. 

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Nursery Growers Face Challenges in 2021

Posted by Harriet Mills on Apr 28, 2021 11:15:00 AM

It is always surprising how a garden planted with the same array of annuals and perennials every year can look entirely different from one Spring to the next. It all depends on rainfall, temperatures, soil nutrients, and a multitude of other factors, but that is the beauty of it! Every growing season is uniquely it is own.

For wholesale nursery growers, their seasons can be just as temperamental, but with much larger consequences. Choptank works with hundreds of nurseries across the United States to help get their live plants to market, in good condition, and at reasonable rate

s. Since Mother's Day is coming up and nursery freight is in full swing, we thought we would check in with several of our nursery and landscape shippers in states like Alabama, Maryland, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, to see how the 2021 season is shaping up so far.

CONSUMER BUYING HABITS

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2021 Produce Shipping Season Faces Challenges

Posted by Harriet Mills on Apr 8, 2021 8:34:35 AM

Every produce shipping season is different, but 2021 has more than one extenuating circumstance that could make it one for the record books. Not only are we coming off of a volatile, high volume post-pandemic freight market, but we still are trying to recover after a week of bizarre winter weather in Texas and the deep South that devastated many winter crops.   

Melons, onions, lettuce, and broccoli were just some of the more than $600 million in damaged produce. According to Texas A&M Today, the estimated losses from weather-related storms are broken down by these categories:

  • Citrus crops, at least $230 million
  • Livestock, at least $228 million
  • Vegetable crops, at least $150 million
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Tags: Shipper News, refrigerated freight services, truckload freight shipping

Innovation During the Pandemic

Posted by Harriet Mills on Mar 12, 2021 7:32:46 AM

​For almost a decade, technology has been a primary focus for transportation and logistics companies. It had been an industry that desperately needed to replace years of disjointed and fractured practices. Now fiercely competitive, 3PLs (third-party logistics companies) are racing to streamline the supply chain through greater efficiency and real-time visibility, ditching the old paperwork-heavy processes that cost all parties too much time and money. In the supply chain, innovation is the name of the game.

 

When COVID-19 turned the world upside down, the way goods moved was suddenly thrust into the spotlight. Unexpected panic-buying behaviors by consumers emerged, with essentials like toilet paper and other frequently purchased staples vanishing off grocery shelves as fast as a puff of smoke on a windy day. The world of logistics could not keep up.

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Tags: Technology, Industry News, 3PL News

Freight Rates on the Rise

Posted by Harriet Mills on Feb 18, 2021 1:19:10 PM

Speculation about how much shipping costs will increase this year vary, but industry experts agree that rate hikes are inevitable, and soon.

The last year has tested the industry to its limits. Expecting the unexpected has become the norm because of COVID-19. It has stretched us like too little butter over too much bread, creating far-reaching consequences. Now that the pandemic threat may be winding down in many places, we are presented with one more thing to make us grind our teeth at night—more cost to our bottom line.

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Tags: Shipper News, refrigerated freight services, Truck Rates, truckload freight shipping, 3PL News

Shipping flowers by the truckload for Valentine's Day

Posted by Harriet Mills on Feb 11, 2021 2:45:00 PM

It’s the flower shippers who deserve the love on Valentine’s Day!

Most people have no idea what those beautiful flowers go through to get to you. The ones that wind up on coffee tables and office desks across the U.S. -- it’s not just a stroll down from the local flower shop. Oh, no. It is more likely that those beautiful buds have traveled thousands of miles, through various temperature zones, over bumpy roads and border crossings, and even through ports to get to you.

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Tags: Shipper News, Nursery

2021 Chinese New Year & Supply Chain Risk in the Freight Market

Posted by Harriet Mills on Jan 28, 2021 2:15:00 PM

Picture the hustle and bustle of the Christmas holiday, but on STEROIDS. That is what it is like during the Chinese New Year (CNY) in the Eastern half of the world in January and February. It is the largest human migration in the world. For countries like China, Korea, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines, the event is celebrated not only for a few days or even a week, but two weeks. 

The dates change from year to year depending on the calendar. This year, CNY is much later than it was in 2020, by 18 days. According to Wikipedia, the criteria used to establish the dates is as follows: “The first day of the Chinese New Year begins on the new moon that appears between 21 January and 20 February. 

In 2021, the first day of the Chinese New Year will be on Friday, February 12, which is the Year of the Ox. The celebration lasts until February 22, but preparations often begin as early as February 4.

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Tags: Industry News, truckload freight shipping

2021 High Shipping Costs: How 3PLs Can Help

Posted by Harriet Mills on Jan 14, 2021 2:38:51 PM

Cost savings should be at the top of every shippers list this year. There is no question that freight rates have taken a giant leap skyward over the last six to nine months. Shipping costs have ballooned ever since the pandemic took hold and consumer’s erratic buying behaviors turned the market upside down. 

Choosing the right transportation provider to help move your freight in 2021 could be the most critical factor influencing your business’s bottom line. For some companies, it could be the difference between keeping your doors open or going out of business. 

(Source: DAT Solutions, LLC.)

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