“The retail chains view shipping as a component within a sophisticated logistics and supply chain management system,” says John Fossey, Drewry Shipping Consultants Ltd. (www. drewry.co.uk). Transparency will loom larger among shipper demands.
In a report on refrigerated shipping (reefer) and logistics, London-based Drewry notes shippers and consignees are placing new demands on carriers who transport or handle reefer cargos in ships and within terminals.
“The 2003 season has provided a boost for the conventional reefer ship sector, for which moves to consolidate the industry can claim some benefit, says Fossey. “There are key aspects of conventional palletized cargo working — particularly in the major fruit trades — that should fit better with the emerging supply chain requirements than containerized options.”
Driven by population growth and increased wealth, there’s an added cultural dimension driven by demand shifting from customers being content with seasonal availability of products to requiring 365-day-a-year availability.