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West Coast and California Logistics Blog

Product Distribution: Shrink Order-to-Delivery Cycle Time with Transloading and Deconsolidation

Apr 12, 2018 / by Jerry Critchfield posted in West Coast Distribution, Port Logistics, Distribution

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Transloading is by no means a new method of product distribution, but the rationale for implementing it has changed over the years.   In the past, transload operations were primarily a cost-savings play as the contents of multiple 20-foot and 40-foot ocean containers can fit into relatively fewer 53-foot domestic trailers.  This results in fewer trips and therefore lower costs.   With the “Amazon-ization” of the supply chain, however, transloading – and its ally, deconsolidation – continues to thrive as a go-to strategy for a different reason: speeding order-to-delivery time. 

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C-TPAT Certification: Is it right for you?

Mar 29, 2018 / by Bob Lilja posted in Port Logistics, C-TPAT

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Created in the aftermath of 9/11, the Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) was formed to strengthen and protect foreign trade and U.S. border security.  It is a private-public partnership between the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and companies such as importers, exporters and many other supply chain professionals.  By pursuing C-TPAT certification, member companies can enjoy a variety of supply chain benefits that can boost operational safety and efficiency.  For some companies, however, these benefits may not outweigh the effort needed to meet requirements. 

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Food Distribution Logistics: Finding a 3PL Who Has What It Takes

Mar 15, 2018 / by Bob Lilja posted in Food Supply Chain, 3PL Outsourcing, Food Logistics

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Handing all or part of your food distribution operation over to a third-party logistics (3PL) provider may seem like a leap of faith.  After all, you’re relying on the 3PL’s ability to maintain food quality throughout the distribution cycle and to keep your company compliant with FDA and other requirements.  But with the proper due diligence, you can be confident in a provider’s ability to drive superior performance in all areas, from compliance and safety to operational execution and cost control. 

Here are a few key questions you should ask as part of your qualification process for food distribution partners. 

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Finding the Right 3PL for Chemical Warehousing Solutions

Mar 1, 2018 / by Robert Deiro posted in Chemical Storage

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There is no shortage of third-party logistics providers (3PLs) that claim chemical logistics expertise and have space for your hazardous and non-hazardous chemicals.  But, separating the seasoned pros from the less qualified operations can be difficult.  In this post, we identify 5 tips to help you find the right 3PL provider for safe and reliable chemical warehousing solutions.

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3 Candy Transportation Habits You May Need to Break

Feb 15, 2018 / by Jerry Critchfield posted in Confectionery Logistics

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When it comes to eating too much candy, some people find it a hard habit to break.  And, when it comes to candy transportation, many confectionery shippers have a few bad habits of their own.  The following details three common examples.

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Retail Suppliers: Why Supply Chain Metrics are Critical to Retaining Your Business

Jan 26, 2018 / by Arlene Slivka posted in 3PL Outsourcing

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In modern baseball, the analysis of player performance has less to do with time-honored traits (e.g., power, speed, agility) and increasingly more to do with metrics.  With these metrics, teams define the “best” players as those that perform well in key statistical areas like “on-base percentage” and “slugging percentage” – not necessarily who can hit the ball the farthest.  

The same is true in the modern supply chain, where – like baseball analysts – retailers keep score and measure statistics. And that close scrutiny ultimately increases the pressure on you, the retail supplier.

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Air Freight Shipping: When Does It Make Sense?

Jan 11, 2018 / by Jerry Critchfield posted in West Coast Distribution, Transportation Strategies, Distribution

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Air freight shipping.  In the eCommerce world, it’s a major component of everyday business.  For freight shippers outside of eCommerce, however, it’s far less common than truck, rail, and ocean transport.

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Refrigerated Transport: Multi-Temperature Safety Considerations

Dec 28, 2017 / by Jerry Critchfield

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“Can you transport products with different temperatures together and do it safely?” 

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Can One Warehouse Store Different Temperature-Sensitive Products?

Dec 14, 2017 / by David Hooper

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Storing different temperature-sensitive products together is a little like running a pet store.  While they may have very different care requirements, a lizard, a puppy, and a goldfish can all co-exist safely under the same pet shop roof provided their individual needs are met. 

The same holds true in the warehouse, as products with totally different – and often opposite – requirements can be stored together safely as long as appropriate measures are taken. 

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Hazardous Material Storage: Frequently Asked Questions

Nov 30, 2017 / by Bob Lilja posted in Chemical Logistics, Chemical Storage

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If performed incorrectly, hazardous material storage can be an extremely dangerous undertaking.  A single slip up or oversight doesn’t just impact line items on a balance sheet, it puts lives at risk.  With the right provider, however, hazmat storage can be just as safe as the storage of any non-hazmat item. 

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