Port of LA
UPS, FedEx, Walmart Join to Reduce Supply Chain Bottlenecks

UPS, FedEx, Walmart Join to Reduce Supply Chain Bottlenecks

Oct. 14, 2021
Companies will move cargo during less congested times to allow trucks to move more quickly on highways during less crowded nighttime hours, and truckers at the ports can drop off and pick up loads more quickly.

On Oct. 13,  Vice President Harris, Secretary Buttigieg and Director Deese met with the leaders of the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, as well as representatives of labor and the business community, to discuss solutions to the congestion at the two ports. The two ports discussed moving to 24/7 operations.

As reported by NBC News, President Biden announced that UPS, FedEx and Walmart, will up their efforts to address supply chain issues after retailers have already begun warning that some products may not make it to the shelves before the holidays.

Target, Samsung and Home Depot, will also assist with the backlog, which "paves the way for smaller retailers to also get the goods from a 24/7 model," White House officials said.

"Never again should our country and our economy be unable to make critical products we need because we don't have access to materials to make that product," President Biden said in a speech. "Never again should we have to rely too heavily on one company or one country or one person in the world, particularly when countries don't share our values when it comes to labor and environmental standards."

The White House said that labor leaders made clear their support for this effort, and business leaders announced new commitments to move their cargo during the newly available nighttime and weekend hours.

Participants discussed how the movement of cargo during less congested times will allow trucks to move more quickly on highways during less crowded nighttime hours, and truckers at the ports can drop off and pick up loads more quickly. These commitments from some of the nation’s biggest companies during off-peak hours should increase small businesses’ ability to move their goods during peak hours, including those exporting their goods.

The White House noted that discussions took place about the record-setting cargo moving through the nation’s ports this past year, "where workers at the ports risked their lives to make sure essential goods like food and medicine were available for American families. They noted that the system is almost entirely in the hands of private businesses, who operate and control the ships, the docks, the trucks, the warehouses, and the rails that move goods from ships to stores to houses."

Participants agreed to continue to work together, with the support of Port Envoy Porcari, on 24/7 operations at the two ports and across the entire supply chain. They discussed additional solutions to alleviate congestion and improve efficiency. This included a temporary expansion of warehousing and rail service, improving data tools and data sharing at the ports and increasing both recruitments of truck drivers while improving the quality of trucking jobs. They discussed the importance of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and Build Back Better legislation, which would make a generational investment in our workers, our infrastructure, and our supply chains and create a more resilient and globally competitive goods movement system in the U.S.

Attendees included:

  • Vice President Kamala Harris
  • Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg
  • National Economic Council Director Brian Deese
  • Port Envoy John Porcari
  • Gene Seroka, Executive Director, Port of Los Angeles
  • Mario Cordero, Executive Director, Port of Long Beach
  • Willie Adams, International President, ILWU 
  • James Hoffa Jr., General President, Teamsters  
  • Greg Regan, President, Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO
  • John Furner, President & CEO, Walmart U.S.
  • Dr. Udo Lange, President and CEO, FedEx Logistics
  • Nando Cesarone, President, U.S. Operations, UPS
  • Brian Cornell, Board Chairman and CEO, Target
  • Ted Decker, President and COO, Home Depot
  • KS Choi, President and CEO, Samsung Electronics North America
  • Matt Shay, President & CEO, National Retail Federation
  • Peter Friedmann, Executive Director, Agriculture Transportation Coalition
  • Chris Spear, President and CEO, American Trucking Associations
  • Ian Jefferies, President and CEO, Association of American Railroads
  • Suzanne Clark, President and CEO, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Geoff Freeman, President and CEO, Consumer Brands Association
  • Jim McKenna, President and CEO, Pacific Maritime Association

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