New challenges for growing the nation’s “cold chain”

In an interview with SCMR, executives explained how the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA) -- a confederation of several major industries engaged in temperature-controlled logistics – advances that mission.
By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
September 21, 2010 - SCMR Editorial

When it comes to ensuring sustainable and safe transport of food and medicine, a single unified vision is required, said Andy Janson, chairman of the International Refrigerated Transportation Association (IRTA) and a past member of the Board of Governors of the World Food Logistics Organization (WFLO).

In an interview with SCMR, Janson also explained how the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA)—a confederation of several major industries engaged in temperature-controlled logistics – advances that mission.

“The recession has caused this to be a buyer’s market for shippers,” he said. “So much of the freight had dried up, but there was still plenty of capacity out there. Rates became very competitive. Fortunately, fuel costs were drastically improving as the price of oil dropped, but we’re seeing costs creep back up now.”

And what about capacity? Janson said that he follows the Morgan Stanley Truckloads Freight Index, which is showing a six-year high in demand.

“Now, that the demand has surged, we are concerned that there will not be enough trucks in the cold chain to carry the holiday season loads,” he said.

Not that this signals a major uptick for the economy, he cautioned.

“Things will improve, but this may not be a dramatic rebound,” said Janson. “We haven’t even really begun the recovery yet. Consumer confidence deeply impacts the supply chain and until that fully recovers, we’ll be treading water. We are predicting carrier’s rates will gradually go back up.”

Meanwhile, the GCCA is working with its members to champion new export incentives. According to GCCA spokesmen, the one area where perishable commodities might see some benefit is the advancement of free trade agreements.  The U.S. currently has agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama that have been signed and are awaiting Congressional approval. 

“The Administration has indicated an interest in finalizing the free trade agreement with Korea, which has been stalled since its signing in 2007,” said Lowell Randel, GCCA’s director of government affairs.



About the Author

image
Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Subscribe to Logistics Management magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your
entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

As was the case for the second quarter, third quarter earnings results for publicly-traded less-than-truckload (LTL) carriers are again strong. Signs of solid earnings results from carriers that have posted earnings to date include tonnage increases, gains in weight per shipment and average daily shipments, higher yield, and revenue per hundredweight.

While the holiday season is known to bring good tidings and cheer to all, it may also come with another thing that is not so pleasant: higher rate freights. That was the thesis of a commentary written by Mark Montague, industry pricing analyst and chief market-watcher for DAT, a Portland, Ore.-based subsidiary of TransCore.

Earlier this week, FedEx said it is expanding its International First service for early deliveries with the addition of 31 new origin countries, which will bring the total number of origin markets for the service to 97.

Monday, December 22 is pegged as UPS's peak delivery day, as the company expects to deliver more than 34 million packages that day, adding that it expects to see six days in December top last year’s peak shipment day delivery record of 31 million packages.

The time has come again for less-than-truckload (LTL) general rate increases (GRI), with various carriers recently announced their respective rate hikes in recent days.

Article Topics

Feature · Global · Supply Chain · Logistics · Transportation · Economy · Trade · SME · All topics

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review. Patrick covers international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. Contact Patrick Burnson

Comments

Post a comment
Commenting is not available in this channel entry.