Deep Dive

Industry insights from our journalists

  • dot's, pretzels, Hershey
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    Retrieved from Dot's Homestyle Pretzels.

    How CPGs are using M&A to boost manufacturing amid supply disruptions

    While dealmaking often focuses on food or beverage brands, more companies are buying plants to ramp up production, widen an offering’s reach and lessen dependence on outside manufacturers.

    Christopher Doering • Sept. 20, 2022
  • Dozens of packages are lined up along a Manhattan street as a FedEx truck makes deliveries on December 6, 2021 in New York City.
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    Spencer Platt/Getty Images via Getty Images

    How tensions between FedEx Ground and its contractors reached a boiling point

    The logistics giant's model for independent delivery providers is broken, an analyst said. One contractor is leading a push for change.

    Max Garland • Aug. 25, 2022
  • Aerial view of a container ship passing beneath a suspension bridge while a semi-truck with a cargo container crosses above.
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    Photo Illustration: Getty Images; Industry Dive

    ‘We have to do something’: Can retail close the gap on supply chain emissions?

    The industry is woefully behind on scope 3 targets for greenhouse gases. Data poses steep challenges, but experts say retailers still can — and must — do more.

    Ben Unglesbee • Aug. 11, 2022
  • candy
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    Christopher Doering/Supply Chain Dive

    Small candy makers rethink operations as supply chain issues bite

    Sweets manufacturers are doing away with long-time traditions to weather labor shortages, high costs and unreliable ingredient deliveries.

    Christopher Doering • Aug. 4, 2022
  • A Covid testing site in New York
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    Spencer Platt via Getty Images

    Makers of COVID-19 tests shift focus as testing wanes

    Startups that grew quickly from large contracts are looking nervously to a new future, as demand plummets for mass testing and shifts to homes.

    Elise Reuter • July 27, 2022
  • Stock image of "Lady Day: Body & Soul," which missed its release date because of supply chain issues.
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    Courtesy of Rocket 88 Books

    Waiting for 'Lady Day': A Billie Holiday book's supply chain saga

    On the planned release date, pre-ordered copies sat inside a container aboard the Evergreen ship stuck in the Chesapeake Bay. Their voyage offers a glimpse into today’s ocean freight challenges.

    Colin Campbell • July 7, 2022
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    Natalie Behring via Getty Images

    Sustainable packaging goals challenged by supply chain realities

    As CPGs set targets to cut virgin plastic use, chaotic forces like the pandemic, poor weather and war complicate the timeline.

    Samantha Oller • June 9, 2022
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    Ethan Miller/Getty Images via Getty Images

    Carriers, shippers grapple with how to cut emissions in airfreight

    The airfreight industry is rolling out environmentally-minded initiatives. Will it be enough for shippers to stick with the emissions-heavy mode?

    Max Garland • May 18, 2022
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    Mario Tama via Getty Images

    Furniture retailers forge new supply chain practices as backlogs, delays prevail

    Improved inventory management is just one practice — executives are also looking at new sourcing destinations to mitigate risk.

    Ben Unglesbee • April 25, 2022
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    Oli Scarff via Getty Images

    Amazon is slowing down its fulfillment center spend. What's next?

    Heightened demand put Amazon's distribution buildout into overdrive. To speed up delivery and limit costs, it will have to invest more.

    Max Garland • March 16, 2022
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    Mario Tama via Getty Images

    Retail supply chains were made to be broken. Will brands adapt — or revert?

    The past two years have laid bare vulnerabilities that have long existed in the system, including a lack of capacity and geographic concentration in manufacturing.

    Ben Unglesbee • Feb. 11, 2022
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    Courtesy of Johnsonville

    Food suppliers wade into logistics as trucking rates soar

    Businesses can't evade the trucking market, but there are strategies they can adopt to lessen the impact of market forces.

    Shefali Kapadia • Feb. 9, 2022
  • Darrin Masters poses alongside Jenny Ramos, head trainer at Advance Auto Parts' Kutztown distribution center.
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    Advance Auto Parts has a program to hire people with disabilities at 16 of its 44 distribution centers. Darrin Masters (right), who was hired via the program, poses alongside Jenny Ramos (left), head trainer at Advance Auto Parts' Kutztown distribution center. Advance Auto Parts granted permission to use this image.

    Disability inclusion programs help warehouses hire overlooked talent

    Retail and logistics companies are accelerating their commitments to workers with disabilities as a labor crunch hampers operations. Experts say the programs have sizeable benefits.

    Colin Campbell • Feb. 8, 2022
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    Mario Tama via Getty Images

    How grocers are managing the twin pressures of supply chain disruption and inflation

    Companies need to be particularly "agile" in 2022, one expert said, as high demand and shortages can make inflation appear quickly.

    Jeff Wells • Jan. 31, 2022
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    LeoPatrizi via Getty Images

    Delivery firms deepen restaurant relationships as growth slows

    Major aggregators are rolling out white labels, subscription programs and data tools to retain partners as more diners order from operators directly. 

    Julie Littman • Jan. 31, 2022
  • A woman is checking her receipt thoroughly, after she'd stored her catch in the trunk. She bought everything she needs, time to go home.
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    LukaTDB via Getty Images

    Grocers are experimenting with delivery fees. Here are 8 key factors to consider.

    Experts said they expect — and encourage — grocers to continue testing strategies for dealing with delivery costs.

    Catherine Douglas Moran • Jan. 18, 2022
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    George Frey via Getty Images

    'Insult to injury': Record rail demurrage adds to shipper costs

    Storage fees skyrocketed in 2021 after an import surge snarled transportation networks. The ballooning revenues have shippers and railroads at odds over who's at fault for congestion.

    Sarah Zimmerman and Edwin Lopez • Jan. 12, 2022
  • Hain Celestial, tea
    Image attribution tooltip
    Permission granted by Hain Celestial

    CPGs grapple with a murky 2022 outlook as inflation, supply chain weigh on operations

    Uncertainty is making it hard for CEOs to determine whether they should raise prices or take other actions.

    Christopher Doering • Jan. 11, 2022
  • Employees prepare orders at Amazon's San Bernardino Fulfillment Center on October 29, 2013 in San Bernardino, California.
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    Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images via Getty Images

    7 charts show Southern California's warehousing crunch

    Easing the chokepoint is a "balancing act" of labor, warehouse space and goods movement, one expert said.

    Max Garland • Dec. 8, 2021
  • An aereal shot of the San Pedro Bay ports, Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach, provided in a news release on Oct. 26, 2021.
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    Courtesy of Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach

    Trucking's role in untangling the web of West Coast port congestion

    The driver shortage has become a "scapegoat" for bottlenecks as empty containers, low yard productivity, limited space and unavailable chassis converge.

    Jim Stinson • Nov. 24, 2021
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    Danielle Ternes/Construction Dive

    Pricing insanity: Material costs escalate, driving contractor desperation

    Amid unprecedented supply chain challenges, firms locked into contracts based on last year's prices are feeling the heat.

    Robyn Griggs Lawrence • Oct. 28, 2021
  • Yantian-port from above from creative commons, downloaded June 2021
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    "Yantian port from above" by Gigel.atat is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

    After years of ‘Made in China,’ supply chains consider alternatives

    The change in tone from U.S.-based supply chains is not a mass exodus from China. Instead, it's an approach that embraces diversification. 

    Shefali Kapadia • Oct. 14, 2021
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    Getty Images

    The rise of LTL: How e-commerce changed the middle mile

    Businesses are shipping smaller quantities of freight more frequently, giving logistics professionals more to manage in increasingly complex networks.

    S.L. Fuller • Oct. 6, 2021
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    Andrew Burton / Staff via Getty Images

    Aircraft emissions present a roadblock to supply chain sustainability goals

    FedEx's Chief Sustainability Officer says true aviation sustainability "is an intractable problem." Will environmentally conscious shippers move away from airfreight?

    Max Garland • Sept. 8, 2021
  • Burnt down telecom antenna @ Annecy-le-Vieux 5G
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    Retrieved from Flickr user Guilhem Vellut on November 13, 2020

    What 3G's sunset means for tracking, visibility tech

    Companies relying on IoT devices for their supply chains have a relatively tight window to upgrade to 4G.

    Deborah Abrams Kaplan • Aug. 31, 2021