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THE EAGLERAIL HAS LANDED: CEO MIKE WYCHOCKI PUSHES A “NO BRAINER” WHEN IT COMES TO MOVING SHIPPING CONTAINERS AT CONGESTED PORTS

eaglerail

THE EAGLERAIL HAS LANDED: CEO MIKE WYCHOCKI PUSHES A “NO BRAINER” WHEN IT COMES TO MOVING SHIPPING CONTAINERS AT CONGESTED PORTS

It’s amazing where new logistics solutions come from. They are usually born by veteran shippers with visions on how to improve an existing operation. Or it can be a customer or customers seeking help in conquering a specific challenge that eventually resonates throughout the industry.

Then there is the inception of Chicago-based EagleRail Container Logistics’ signature solution. It can be traced to a pitch meeting for a new monorail in Brazil that was attended by a port authority official who was there more as a cheerleader than a participant.

Watching a Chicago marketing man’s PowerPoint presentation about his company’s passenger monorail system to local leaders in São Paulo eight years ago, the port representative, Jose Newton Gama, marveled at how the magnetic levitation (Maglev) trains holding people would be suspended under overhead tracks.

Then the Brazilian known by friends as Newton raised his hand.

“Excuse me?” he asked the Americano. “Could your system be adapted to hold shipping containers?”

That had never occurred to project designers, whose monorail cars for passengers are much lighter than would be required for cargo containers hauled by ships, trucks and freight trains. But the marketing man shared Gama’s question with his colleagues in the Windy City, and that planted the seed that eventually bore EagleRail Container Logistics.

Chief Executive Officer Mike Wychocki was an early investor who eventually bought out that marketing man, but the first EagleRail system is named “Newton” after the Brazilian who now sits on the company’s board of advisors. “He’s a great guy,” says Wychocki during a recent phone interview. “Newton is our biggest cheerleader.”

Wychocki’s no slouch with the pom-poms himself, having pitched EagleRail at 40 ports in 20 countries over the past five years. His company, which has offices around the world, is developing its first prototype in China, and studies are underway at six ports as EagleRail sets about raising $20 million in capital. (The window for small investments had just closed when Wychocki was interviewed. His company has since shifted its focus to large investors.)

The way ports have operated for decades left no need for a system like EagleRail’s. Big ships dock, cranes remove containers stacked on their decks and each box is then moved onto the back of a flatbed truck that either hauls it to a distribution center or an intermodal yard. Until recent years, no one really thought of disrupting the process because, as Wychocki puts it, “you could always find cheaper truck drivers.”

However, truck driver shortages, port-area air pollution and congestion caused by the time it takes to load and unload ever-larger ships have prompted serious soul searching when it comes to short hauls. Expanding the size of ports is often not an option due to the cities that have grown to surround them. This has led to the creation of large container parks for trucks and/or freight trains within a few miles of ports, but getting boxes to those remains problematic—at a time when megaships are only making matters more difficult.

“There is an old saying that ports are where old trucks go to die,” says Wychocki, who ticks off as problems associated with that mode of moving containers pollution, maintenance and fuel costs, as well as the issues of public safety because some drivers essentially live inside of their vehicles, which can attract prostitution and leave behind litter and human waste. Adding even more of these dirty trucks would necessitate more road building, which only adds to environmental concerns.

With ground space at ports a constantly shrinking commodity, tunneling underground may be viewed as an option. But Wychocki points out that many ports have emerged on unstable ground like backfill, and water, power and sewer lines are usually below what’s under the streets beyond port gates. The idea of a hyperloop has been bandied about, but it would require emptying shipping containers at the port, loading the contents into smaller boxes, sending those through to another yard, and then repacking the shipping containers on the other side. “That defeats the whole point” of relieving port congestion, the EagleRail CEO says.

Ah, but every port has unused air space, which is what Wychocki’s company seeks to exploit. “If an Amazon warehouse can lift and shuttle packages robotically,” he says, “why not do the same with a 60,000-pound package? Go to a warehouse. See how Amazon works with packages. They use overhead light rails. It’s an obvious idea, so obvious. It’s a no brainer when you think about it.”

Yes, Amazon also uses drones, but can you imagine the size it would have to be to carry a 60,000-pound shipping container? Wychocki sees a suspended container track as an extension of the cranes on every loading dock worldwide, which is why EagleRail systems are also all-electric and composed of the same crane hardware to avoid snags when it comes to replacing parts.

However, Wychocki is quick to note EagleRail is not a total solution when it comes to port congestion. He calculates that among the short-haul trucks leaving a port, 50 percent are going to 500 different locations, many of which are different states away, while the other half is bound for just a couple nearby destinations. EagleRail is geared toward the latter, and the problem with getting containers to them “is not technological; it’s who controls the five kilometers between the port and the intermodal facility,” he says.

Lifting equipment at ports “is exactly the same in all 200 countries,” he adds. “The part that is not the same is the back end. What is the port’s configuration? Where do the roads come in? What we do is form a consortium and build it with each local player, such as the port authority, the road authority, the national rail company, the power company. Getting everyone involved helps get procurement and environmental rights of way.”

He concedes that getting everyone on board “varies by location,” but when it comes to environmental concerns “everyone’s kind of wanting to do this because it means fewer trucks, and the power companies would prefer the use of electricity (over burning diesel). It sounds harder than it is to get everyone rowing in the same direction.”

Wychocki points to another bonus with EagleRail: It allows for total control of one’s intermodal yard because containers come and go on the same circular route—all day long. “We take this on as a disruptive business model,” he says, noting that short-haul trucks generally involve the use of data-chain-breaking clipboards and mobile phones. EagleRail systems track containers on them in real-time, rolling in all customs paperwork and billing invoices automatically.

“It’s amazing, I just came from the Port of Rotterdam, where I was a keynote,” Wychocki says. “Even the biggest ports in the world like Antwerp were saying, ‘This is great. Why isn’t anyone else doing it?’”

Actually, EagleRail accidentally created direct competition. Wychocki explains that during the initial design phase, his company worked with a foreign monorail concern whose cars used what were essentially aircraft tires rolling inside a closed channel. Concerns about maintaining a system that would invariably involve frequently changing tires—and thus slowing down operations—caused EagleRail to reject that design in favor of another third-party’s calling for steel-on-steel wheels. The designer with tires is pressing on with its own system and without EagleRail.

“I’m glad we didn’t go that route,” says Wychocki, who nonetheless expects more serious competition once EagleRail systems are up and running. Fortunately for the company, there are plenty of ports bursting at the seams that cannot wait that long. Wychocki says a question he invariably gets after pitching EagleRail is: “Where were you 10 years ago? Usually, there is an urgency.”

That’s why “our goal was to get out of the gate fast, build market share and our brand and create a quasi-franchise network,” says Wychocki, whose business model has EagleRail owning 25 percent of a system while the port and other local entities own the rest.

He estimates that within 10 years, 12 EagleRail systems will be operating. If that sounds like a pipe dream, consider that his company’s newsletter boasts 3,000 subscribers before a system is even up and running. Wychocki does not credit “brilliant marketing” for that keen interest. “It’s because every port’s problems are getting worse. Everyone is squealing about what to do with these giant ships that cannot be unloaded fast enough. They are desperate.”

DACHSER

DACHSER’s New LCL Service Offers Expanded Connections for Shippers

Shippers seeking a consolidated access option along the route from Europe to Chile are now offered DACHSER’s latest weekly schedule of LCL services. This added service streamlines the process by collecting container shipments followed by consolidation at its Hamburg warehouse. Once consolidated, the items are shipped directly to San Antonio, Chile without interruption.

“Referring to ‘less than container load,’ our new LCL service is designed to meet the specific needs of our customers with smaller merchandise quantities. The service not only optimizes efficiencies and reduces costs, but the fixed weekly schedule improves the planning process,” said Guido Gries, Managing Director, DACHSER Americas.

“An effective LCL service comes down to timing—from the coordination of the grouping of goods and to the fixed container trips between ports. Our management of this timing allows our customers the benefit of improved planning and transit times as well as transparency of their shipments,” said Mr. Gries.

Markets including Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Denmark, Netherlands, Czech Republic, Poland, and Slovakia are directly connected to the Chilean region thanks to this added service. DACHSER continues to showcase its dedication to expanding network capabilities while supporting the needs of its customers, particularly in a trying time for the supply chain and global logistics players.

“The service offers customers streamlined container coordination and management of all sea freight imports deployed on first-class carriers to Chile,” added Mr. Gries. “Thanks to our extensive European logistics network we can offer seamless visibility from the door of the supplier in Europe to the final destination.”

Additional service offerings include interlocked logistics solutions aimed to support road, air, and sea logistics through transportation and warehousing services as well as pre-carriage handling and transparent supplier tracking.

supplies

FREE TRADE IN MEDICINES AND SUPPLIES IS THE HEALTHIEST APPROACH

What Does Trade Have to Do with the Pandemic?

pandemic is a type of epidemic, wherein an outbreak of a disease not only affects a high proportion of the population at the same time, but also spreads quickly over a wide geographic area.

As the novel coronavirus jumped continents, governments in countries yet unaffected or with low incidence rates moved to prevent “importing” the virus through individual travel. Simultaneously, governments acted to create diagnostic kits and treatments for those with the virus – all praise our frontline healthcare workers.

Unfortunately, what could worsen the situation is a policy practice that seems to be infectious. More than 20 governments are banning the export of needed supplies, a prescription for shortages and higher prices. What the crisis also lays bare is that key countries and many important healthcare products remain outside a WTO agreement that would otherwise enable duty-free trade in the medicines and supplies we need on a regular basis.

Pandemic Proportions

In the history of pandemics, there has been none more deadly than the infamous Bubonic Plague which took 200 million lives in the mid-14th century, wiping out half the population on the European Continent. The pathogen spread through infected fleas carried by rodents, frequent travelers on trading ships. The practice of quarantine began in the seaport of Venice, which required any ships arriving from infected ports to sit at anchor for 40 days — quaranta giorni — before landing. Two centuries later, Small Pox took 56 million lives. In the modern era, some 40 to 50 million succumbed to the Spanish Flu of 1918 and HIV/AIDS has claimed 25-35 million lives since 1981.

For perspective, and not to minimize its severe toll, the number of fatalities from novel coronavirus will likely exceed 10,000 by the time of this writing. COVID-19, as it is currently known, is a reminder that we live with the ongoing threat from many types of both known infectious diseases like cholera, Zika and Avian flu, as well as diseases yet unknown to us. Although we can more rapidly detect, contain and treat epidemics, diseases now travel at the speed of a person on board an international flight. Our cities are bigger and denser, further enabling rapid transmission.

Pandemic Prepping Includes Trade

Because we are interconnected, we share the health risks, but we can also problem-solve as a global community. Scientists in international labs share insights to identify viruses, swap guidance on how to conduct confirmatory tests, and quickly communicate best practices for containment.

Outside times of crisis, global trade in health-related products and services has laid the foundation for faster medical breakthroughs through international research and development projects, and by diversifying the capability to produce medical supplies, devices, diagnostics and pharmaceuticals.

Innovation thrives in the United States like nowhere else. Yet, no single country, not even the United States, can discover, produce and distribute diagnostics, vaccines and cures for everything that ails us — or invent every medical intervention that improves the productivity and quality of our lives.

One Quarter of medicines have tariffs

A Dose of Foresight

As the Uruguay Round of multilateral trade negotiations were drawing to a close in 1994, a group of countries representing (at the time) 90 percent of total pharmaceutical production came to an agreement. Each government would eliminate customs duties on pharmaceutical products and avoid trade-restrictive or trade-distorting measures that would otherwise frustrate the objective of duty-free trade in medicines.

The WTO’s Pharmaceutical Tariff Elimination Agreement, which entered into force on January 1, 1995, is known as a “zero-for-zero initiative” to eliminate duties reciprocally in a particular industrial sector. Signed onto over subsequent years by the United States, Europe’s 28 member states, Japan, Canada, Norway, Switzerland, Australia and handful of others, the agreement initially covered approximately 7,000 items that included formulated or dosed medicines, medicines traded in bulk, active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) and other chemical intermediaries in finished pharmaceuticals.

Signatories agreed to expand the list in 1996, 1998, 2006 and 2010 so it now covers more than 10,000 products. Tariffs were eliminated on a most-favored-nation basis, meaning it was extended to imports from all WTO members, not just parties to the agreement.

Maintenance Drugs

Though an important start, the agreement has not been updated in a decade. Trade in products covered by the WTO agreement has risen from $1.3 trillion in 2009 to $1.9 trillion in 2018. Yet, some 1,000 finished products and 700 ingredients are not covered under the agreement, leaving pharmaceutical trade subject to hundreds of millions in customs duties. With China and India increasing manufacturing over the last decade, the value of global trade included in duty-free treatment decreased from 90 percent in 1995 to 81 percent in 2009 to 78 percent in 2018.

It is challenging to chart trade statistics and tariffs on health-related products, particularly since many chemical ingredients have both medical and non-medical uses. Here we have attempted to reproduce tables developed by the WTO in 2010, but we do not include a large number of chemicals that have general use whose tariff lines were not enumerated in the WTO’s analysis.

Health Product Import Shares

In 2010, the European Union and the United States together accounted for almost half of all world imports of health-related products. Europe has become a much larger importer while U.S. imports have decreased slightly as a percentage of global imports. Imports by many big emerging markets including Brazil, Mexico, China, India and Turkey, have increased along with their purchasing power. These countries benefit from zero duties when importing from countries that signed on to the WTO Pharmaceutical Trade Agreement.

Health Product Export Shares

On the export side, Europe dramatically increased its share of global exports while the United States dropped across the board compared to 2010, particularly in medical products and supplies. China shows significant growth in exports of inputs specific to the pharmaceutical industry – including antibiotics, hormones and vitamins – as well as medical equipment including diagnostic reagents, gloves, syringes and medical devices. India also increased its exports of all types of pharmaceuticals, particularly ingredients, but did not drive up its share across all types of exported health-related products. China and India would benefit from zero duties without having to reciprocate for exports from countries that signed on to the WTO agreement.

That said, according to the trade data, China and India still only account for 5.4 percent of global exports in health-related products covered by the agreement. Therefore, simply expanding membership to include these countries is not sufficient to enlarge duty-free trade – the number of tariff lines covered by the agreement would also need to expand to capture a significant portion of traded healthcare products.

Emerging Market Pharm Trade

Tariffs as a Symptom

The final price of a pharmaceutical is determined by many factors that differ by country. Costs and markups occur along the distribution chain from port charges to warehousing, to local government taxes, distribution charges, and hospital or retailer markups. Tariffs may seem a relatively small component of the final price, but the effect is compounded as all of these “internal” costs accumulate and they are symptomatic of complex regulatory systems.

A 2017 study by the European Centre for International Political Economy determined that tariffs on final prices add an annual burden of up to $6.2 billion in China. In Brazil and India, tariffs on medicines may increase the final price by up to 80 percent of the ex-factory sales price. Imported pharmaceuticals are at a clear disadvantage and patients bear the burden in cost and diminished availability.

Side Effects

According to the U.S. International Trade Commission, the U.S. pharmaceutical industry historically shipped bulk APIs from foreign production sites to the United States before formulating into dosed products. After the WTO agreement, it became viable to import more finished products duty-free. Over the years, a failure to add more APIs to the duty-free list reinforced this trend. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration also allows firms to import formulated products prior to receiving marketing approval to prepare for a new product launch but does not allow bulk API importation before market approval.

The urgency to accrue adequate supplies and treatments for COVID-19 has reignited a debate on U.S. over-reliance on China and India for antibiotics, among other medicines. What if factories must close? What if China and India withhold supplies? If raw materials and ingredients are derived in those countries, would the United States be able to ramp up domestic production? The White House is considering incentives and Buy America government procurement requirements to stimulate demand for U.S. production and in the meanwhile has temporarily reduced tariffs on medical supplies such as disposable gloves, face masks and other common hospital items from China.

20 Countries Ban Medical Exports

A Cure Worse Than the Disease

Removing barriers to trade in essential products is a healthier approach than imposing restrictions that could exacerbate potential shortages.

Nonetheless, some 20 countries have announced a ban on the export of medical gear – masks, gloves, and protective suits worn by medical professionals. They include Germany, France, Turkey, Russia, South Korea, India, Taiwan, Thailand and Kazakhstan.

Governments generally do maintain national stocks of critical items to enable manufacturers to ramp up production in cases of health emergencies or address unexpected gaps in their supply chains. But when major producers withhold global supply, importing countries face shortages and higher prices. Dangerously, India’s trade restrictions go beyond medical gear to restrict export of 26 pharmaceutical ingredients. India, however, relies heavily on APIs imported from China for their medicines, much of it originating from factories in Hubei province where the outbreak emerged.

Bans tend to beget more bans, potentially wreaking havoc on pharmaceutical and medical product supply chains, making it more difficult for healthcare workers to stem spread of the virus. Poorer countries with already fragile and underfunded healthcare systems are left in an even more vulnerable position.

A Test for Public-Private Collaboration

Instead of export restrictions, governments can expedite purchase orders and otherwise support industry efforts to ramp up production for domestic and global use. Most global manufacturers are operating at several times their usual capacity since the initial outbreak in China. Private labs are utilizing high-throughput platforms to conduct more tests faster but require trade in the chemical reagents needed to start up and run the tests.

Biopharmaceutical firms are applying their scientific expertise to accelerate the development of a vaccine and treatments for COVID-19. They are reviewing their research portfolios, investigating previously approved medicines that have potential to treat the virus, and donating approved investigational medicines to the global research effort. Internationally, scientists are collaborating through a Norway-based nonprofit called the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations on COVID-19 vaccine development. They know that the more options, the better – most drug candidates will not get through all three phases of clinical trials.

Recovery

Epidemic diseases evolve and they do not respect borders. Treating them, as well as the myriad chronic diseases and other ailments that affect us more routinely, requires new and adapted medical technologies arising from innovation made widely available through trade.

While there’s nothing inherently wrong with providing incentives to encourage domestic production, it should not come at the expense of free trade in health-related products. Tariffs should be eliminated on life-saving medicines and their ingredients. Governments must impose restrictions on exports temporarily and only when absolutely necessary. In this way, openness in trade will help promote the recovery of both our health and our economies.

Many thanks to economist and contributor Alice Calder for running all the trade numbers in this article. Full data tables may be accessed here.

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Andrea Durkin is the Editor-in-Chief of TradeVistas and Founder of Sparkplug, LLC. Ms. Durkin previously served as a U.S. Government trade negotiator and has proudly taught international trade policy and negotiations for the last fifteen years as an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University’s Master of Science in Foreign Service program.

Alice Calder

Alice Calder received her MA in Applied Economics at GMU. Originally from the UK, where she received her BA in Philosophy and Political Economy from the University of Exeter, living and working internationally sparked her interest in trade issues as well as the intersection of economics and culture.

This article originally appeared on TradeVistas.org. Republished with permission.

businesses

How Businesses can Weather COVID-19: Start with Empathy to Employees

Major U.S. businesses are adjusting operations, laying off employees or reducing hours in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

It’s uncharted territory for the nation, and companies from large brands to small businesses, like everyone else, are operating without a playbook to deal with an unprecedented public health threat that will also have economic implications. How businesses adjust to the pandemic and respond to this “new normal” is critical to the future of their business.

“The most important part is showing empathy to employees – now more than ever in these uncertain times,” says Ed Mitzen (www.edmitzen.com), founder of a health and wellness marketing agency and ForbesBook author of More Than a Number: The Power of Empathy and Philanthropy in Driving Ad Agency Performance.

“While every company is dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, it’s important to keep in mind that your employees are being affected in more ways than one. Added challenges to daily life now include your partner working next to you, your children being home from school, and having to keep an extra close eye on elderly relatives. In these unusual circumstances, people will notice which companies are treating their employees with empathy and compassion and which are not.”

A business leader’s response during a time like this defines who they are as a leader.

Mitzen thinks this challenging time could be used by business owners to assess their company culture and consider that how they treat employees is central to that culture and vital for business results. He explains how leaders can show empathy to employees, strengthen company culture and drive performance:

Lead with support, not force. “Culture starts at the top, and the best results come when leaders support their people and help them get the most out of life, rather than trying to squeeze them to work harder and harder,” Mitzen says. “People can sacrifice for the job for only so long before they burn out. It may sound counterintuitive, but sometimes prioritizing life over work actually improves the work product. Once you hire good people, you don’t have to push them with crazy deadlines to squeeze productivity out of them.”

Build a team of caring people. “Business is a team sport,” Mitzen says. “To have an empathetic culture, you need people who care for each other and work well together. Build teams by looking for people who lead with empathy.  Don’t hire jerks. People who are super-talented but can’t get along with others tend to destroy the team dynamics, and the work product suffers.”

Define a positive culture – and the work. Showing empathy to employees can be an engine generating creativity and productivity. “The internal culture at a company defines the work the company produces,” Mitzen says. “Culture influences who chooses to work for you, how long they stay, and the quality of work they do. And the core of the culture is empathy, starting with employees and extending to customers and the communities that you live in. There’s a strong connection between a healthy work culture, which inspires people, and the work customers are receiving. That kind of company makes sure customers are treated the same way they are being treated.”

“Now more than ever, empathy, kindness and compassion are important values to keep at the forefront of your organization,” Mitzen says. “Business leaders can take the lead in doing the right thing, starting with their employees.”

_________________________________________________________

Ed Mitzen (www.edmitzen.com) is the ForbesBook author of More Than a Number: The Power of Empathy and Philanthropy in Driving Ad Agency Performance and the founder of Fingerpaint, an independent advertising agency grossing $60 million in revenue. A health and wellness marketing entrepreneur for 25 years, Mitzen also built successful firms CHS and Palio Communications. Fingerpaint has been included on the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing companies for seven straight years and garnered agency of the year nominations and wins from MM&M, Med Ad News, and PM360. Mitzen was named Industry Person of the Year by Med Ad News in 2016 and a top boss by Digiday in 2017. A graduate of Syracuse University with an MBA from the University of Rochester, Mitzen has written for Fortune, Forbes, HuffPost, and the Wall Street Journal.

meat

Global Market for Meat Flour, Meals And Pellets 2020: Exports is Under Pressure

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘World – Flours, Meals And Pellets Of Meat Or Meat Offal – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends And Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The global meat meals and pellets market revenue amounted to $23.1B in 2018, jumping by 6% against the previous year. In general, the total market indicated resilient growth from 2007 to 2018: its value increased at an average annual rate of +2.1% over the last eleven years.

However, the intense trade growth seen in recent years is threatened by problems in China, due to the coronavirus epidemic and fears of economic growth.

Consumption By Country

China (6.6M tonnes) remains the largest meat meals and pellets consuming country worldwide, comprising approx. 17% of total volume. Moreover, meat meals and pellets consumption in China exceeded the figures recorded by the second-largest consumer, the U.S. (3.3M tonnes), twofold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by India (2.6M tonnes), with a 6.6% share.

In China, meat meals and pellets consumption increased at an average annual rate of +2.4% over the period from 2007-2018. The remaining consuming countries recorded the following average annual rates of consumption growth: the U.S. (-0.1% per year) and India (+2.8% per year).

Exports 2007-2018

In 2018, approx. 4.4M tonnes of flours, meals and pellets of meat or meat offal were exported worldwide; going up by 14% against the previous year. Overall, meat meals and pellets exports continue to indicate a strong expansion. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2017 with an increase of 26% year-to-year. The global exports peaked in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the immediate term.

In value terms, meat meals and pellets exports amounted to $2.2B (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Over the period under review, meat meals and pellets exports continue to indicate a remarkable expansion. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2008 with an increase of 37% year-to-year. Over the period under review, global meat meals and pellets exports attained their maximum in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the near future.

Exports by Country

In 2018, the U.S. (969K tonnes), distantly followed by the Netherlands (434K tonnes), Germany (354K tonnes), Australia (300K tonnes), France (298K tonnes), Spain (224K tonnes) and Poland (214K tonnes) represented the main exporters of flours, meals and pellets of meat or meat offal, together comprising 64% of total exports. The following exporters – Italy (196K tonnes), Brazil (168K tonnes), New Zealand (157K tonnes), Belgium (155K tonnes) and the UK (94K tonnes) – together made up 18% of total exports.

From 2007 to 2018, average annual rates of growth with regard to meat meals and pellets exports from the U.S. stood at +11.6%. At the same time, Poland (+30.8%), the Netherlands (+15.1%), Spain (+14.7%), France (+13.9%), the UK (+11.9%), Belgium (+11.6%), Germany (+10.6%), Brazil (+8.2%) and Italy (+7.9%) displayed positive paces of growth. Moreover, Poland emerged as the fastest-growing exporter exported in the world, with a CAGR of +30.8% from 2007-2018. Australia and New Zealand experienced a relatively flat trend pattern. While the share of the U.S. (+15 p.p.), the Netherlands (+7.8 p.p.), Germany (+5.4 p.p.), France (+5.2 p.p.), Poland (+4.6 p.p.), Spain (+4 p.p.), Italy (+2.5 p.p.), Belgium (+2.5 p.p.), Brazil (+2.2 p.p.) and the UK (+1.5 p.p.) increased significantly, the shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.

In value terms, the U.S. ($564M) remains the largest meat meals and pellets supplier worldwide, comprising 26% of global exports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by Australia ($219M), with a 10% share of global exports. It was followed by the Netherlands, with a 9.5% share.

In the U.S., meat meals and pellets exports increased at an average annual rate of +15.1% over the period from 2007-2018. The remaining exporting countries recorded the following average annual rates of exports growth: Australia (+6.8% per year) and the Netherlands (+18.2% per year).

Export Prices by Country

In 2018, the average meat meals and pellets export price amounted to $497 per tonne, rising by 2.2% against the previous year. Over the last eleven-year period, it increased at an average annual rate of +2.4%. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2008 an increase of 18% against the previous year. Over the period under review, the average export prices for flours, meals and pellets of meat or meat offal reached their maximum at $576 per tonne in 2013; however, from 2014 to 2018, export prices failed to regain their momentum.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of origin; the country with the highest price was Australia ($730 per tonne), while Belgium ($327 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Australia, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Imports 2007-2018

Global imports stood at 4M tonnes in 2018, surging by 14% against the previous year. Over the period under review, the total imports indicated a resilient increase from 2007 to 2018: its volume increased at an average annual rate of +9.3% over the last eleven-year period. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2018 figures, meat meals and pellets imports increased by +165.5% against 2007 indices. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2008 when imports increased by 27% y-o-y. Over the period under review, global meat meals and pellets imports reached their peak figure in 2018 and are likely to continue its growth in the near future.

In value terms, meat meals and pellets imports stood at $2B (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Overall, meat meals and pellets imports continue to indicate a resilient expansion. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2008 when imports increased by 39% y-o-y. The global imports peaked in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the immediate term.

Imports by Country

The countries with the highest levels of meat meals and pellets imports in 2018 were Viet Nam (412K tonnes), the Philippines (336K tonnes), Thailand (315K tonnes), China (307K tonnes), Italy (291K tonnes), the U.S. (233K tonnes), the Netherlands (202K tonnes), Germany (157K tonnes), Mexico (144K tonnes), Chile (134K tonnes), France (108K tonnes) and Canada (80K tonnes), together reaching 68% of total import.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of imports, amongst the main importing countries, was attained by the Philippines, while imports for the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest meat meals and pellets importing markets worldwide were China ($207M), Viet Nam ($156M) and Thailand ($155M), together comprising 26% of global imports. These countries were followed by the U.S., the Philippines, Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, France, Chile, Canada and Mexico, which together accounted for a further 42%.

In terms of the main importing countries, the Philippines recorded the highest growth rate of the value of imports, over the period under review, while imports for the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Import Prices by Country

The average meat meals and pellets import price stood at $504 per tonne in 2018, reducing by -2.8% against the previous year. Over the period from 2007 to 2018, it increased at an average annual rate of +1.4%. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2013 an increase of 16% against the previous year. In that year, the average import prices for flours, meals and pellets of meat or meat offal attained their peak level of $610 per tonne. From 2014 to 2018, the growth in terms of the average import prices for flours, meals and pellets of meat or meat offal remained at a lower figure.

There were significant differences in the average prices amongst the major importing countries. In 2018, the country with the highest price was Canada ($869 per tonne), while Italy ($300 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Germany, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

tyson foods

TRANSPLACE GETS BOOSTS FROM TYSON FOODS, DANA INTERNATIONAL

Springdale, Arkansas-based Tyson Foods, which is one of the world’s largest food companies, bestowed its 2019 Premier Carrier Award to Transplace, the logistics/transportation/technology company headquartered in Frisco, Texas, and operating offices all over the United States and overseas.

“Transplace has been a partner for more than 35 years with a superior track record of on time and on budget delivery across our entire North American network,” said Chris Kozak, Tyson’s associate director of Contract Carriers. “Over the years as we’ve expanded and developed new consumer-appealing food products, Transplace has adapted its transportation management technologies to support us in staying at the forefront of our industry. Transplace consistently rises to our toughest logistics challenges and remains flexible to the day-to-day changes in our dynamic schedules.”

“In the more than three decades that I’ve been leading our 3PL strategies for Tyson Foods, it truly has been a collaborative relationship,” says Jay Moss, president of Transplace Specialized Services. “We are grateful for the award and honored to work with an organization that’s continuously evolving to meet consumer demands. Our access to data from North America’s largest transportation management system allows us to offer cost management insights and unprecedented efficiencies of scale. The Tyson Foods teams are open to our recommendations and together we’ve overcome countless supply chain challenges over the years.”

In other news, Maumee, Ohio-based Dana International, which engineers solutions for passenger-vehicle, commercial-truck, off-highway and industrial-machinery clients, recently selected Transplace to manage its North American transportation network.

live animals

THE GLOBAL TRAVELS OF LIVE ANIMALS

Horses, Asses, Mules and Hinnies Atop the Tariff Schedule

Unless you’re a farmer or animal breeder, the first item in Chapter 1 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule is one we may think about the least – Live Animals. For most Americans, live animals are a long supply chain away from the supermarket.

At over $21 billion in 2017, global trade in live animals has increased 140 percent over the last two decades. Some 45 million hogs, 16 million sheep, 11 million head of cattle, 5 million goats and 1.9 million poultry (mainly chickens) were transported around the globe, some for breeding and about 80 percent intended for consumption.

A specialized segment within the transportation sector is dedicated to transporting live animals by air, land and sea – from air cargo, tractor trailers and trains, to ocean container shipping.

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Shifting Resource Burdens

The world will be home to 9.7 billion people by 2050. With more mouths to feed, agriculture production must become more efficient against the challenges of limited arable land, energy and water resources, especially in developing countries. International development agencies promote raising livestock as a way to increase income for smallholder farmers (owners can sell products and/or offspring) and to achieve greater food security in rural areas through access to high quality proteins. Importing livestock in the last few months of their life can reduce expenses associated with animal feed and veterinary care while conserving limited water resources.

The water-stressed Middle East region has become a major importer of live animals. Demand for meat and dairy products has grown steeply in Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Importing mature live animals avoids the need to rear animals from birth, shifting the water burden while meeting demand for animals freshly slaughtered in adherence to religious requirements.

Trade in live animals 3x increase

Trade in Genetics, No Goats No Glory

Countries are investing in improving their livestock by either importing live animals or importing frozen semen and embryos for artificial insemination, a process that is achieving higher success rates as costs are coming down. Global trade in purebred animals for breeding in 2017 was a $780 million industry. The animal genetic market is projected to grow from $4.2 billion in 2018 to $5.8 billion by 2023.

In November last year, 1,503 U.S.-origin Holstein heifers valued at $3 million were sold out of Statesville, North Carolina and shipped to Egypt aboard a livestock carrier in an effort by the Government of Egypt to improve the country’s dairy operations supporting output of milk for yogurt and cheese. Qatar is importing American-born dairy cows to surmount trade bans by neighboring countries.

Chickens are by far the largest category of live animals traded globally with hogs coming in second. But it’s dairy goats that could prove key to achieving the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Goats consume fewer resource inputs than cows, goat milk is nutritious, and women often have strong roles in dairy goat ownership and management.

Caprikorn Farms is the oldest goat dairy in Maryland. Raising some of the best dairy goats in the United States and the world, their genetics are in demand. They have worked with Russian authorities to not only send several live animal shipments to Russia but also improve Russia’s health protocol for international shipment. Ten of their goats even flew to Qatar on a private jet.

Bees also get in on the global trade act. Not only do bees circulate throughout the United States to pollinate our many crops, $48.1 million worth of live bees – including Queen bees and semen — were exported globally in 2018. Europe shipped $26.5 million or 55.2 percent of the global total.

Live animal trade routes 2017

Protecting Livestock on the Journey

While North American cattle and hogs have a short truck ride or may even live on ranches along the borders, many animals face a long ocean journey during which their health can be compromised. They are sometimes relegated to older vessels that may be converted from general cargo and not purpose-built to transport the animals in safe conditions. Often on journeys for weeks at a time, animals are at risk for fatigue, heat stress, overcrowding, injury and the spread of disease in close quarters.

The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) issued the Terrestrial Animal Health Code in 2019 that provides standards for transporting animals by land, sea and air to protect the health and welfare of the animals and prevent the transfer of pathogens via international trade in animals.

As the global population increases and agricultural producers seek to maximize the resources available to them while improving output, global trade in live animals is likely to continue to grow. Standards and cooperation in international trade practices will need to evolve along with that trend.

Contributor Sarah Smiley lives on her family farm in Appalachia where they have raised fainting (myotonic) goats and Charolais cattle for more than 20 years.

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Sarah Smiley is a strategic communications and policy expert with over 20 years in international trade and government affairs, working in the U.S. Government, private sector and international organizations.

This article originally appeared on TradeVistas.org. Republished with permission.

business

Keeping Your Business on Track During the Coronavirus Outbreak

The coronavirus outbreak, which is severely affecting business operations around the globe, was recently declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization. C.H. Robinson continues to monitor the situation in the U.S. and globally, staying close to our contract carriers and discussing continuity plans in the event shipping trajectories need to be adjusted due to disruptions or closures at any ports. Although this is not the first or the last event to disrupt global supply chains, unpredictable logistics require a proactive approach for importers and exporters to keep business running as usual.

The latest in air and ocean travel

As factories and production in China return to full efficiency, the whiplash in other areas is starting to take place, particularly in consuming nations such as the U.S. and Europe. We continue to see elevated cases in developed nations that have a heavy reliance on manufacturing outside of the U.S., specifically China. Given this continued volatility, global importers are eager to restock their inventory. As a result, available capacity on the Trans-Pacific will continue to be volatile due to the removed capacity in the market.  The empty container supply has also dwindled in regions where China trade has been a catalyst, primarily North America and Europe, this can have a ripple effect if these empty containers do not get repositioned back to China to support the increase demand that is anticipated at the tail end of March into April.

Similar to China, airlines have canceled majority of passenger flights in and out of Europe and South Korea due to safety concerns and lack of travel demand. Cargo space may be constricted as certain limitations are imposed on passenger travel resulting from adjusted flight schedules and capacity. Although passenger planes have been used to transport cargo more frequently in recent years, available capacity is not heavily impacted by the cancellations due to air charter operators and blank sailings diminishing from ocean carriers. However, contract rates and transit times may need to be adjusted as the airfreight market remains fluid.

As we continue to closely monitor the situation, below are important considerations that will help keep your supply chain moving and better navigate any shipping challenges associated with the latest travel restrictions and schedule shifts.

Assessment of inventory levels

Having an accurate assessment of your inventory is expected, but it’s important to understand how limitations on imports, not only from China but around the globe, will impact your current inventory and regular shipping cadence. If you haven’t already, start discussions with your freight forward around production planning and forecasting. It’s important to look ahead to determine your transportation needs as demand is expected to surpass available capacity in the coming weeks.

Planning ahead in production

There are numerous variables to consider when planning for production. Working through these with a supply chain expert will help you be prepared and proactive as the uncertainty around the virus continues.

-What will production look like and has there been any discussion with the vendors and factories?

-How are existing inventories compared to sales projections?

-What plans are in place in case there continues to be a shortage of workers in China or the demands are not being met within a specific window of time?

-Has there been a discussion about how the backlog will be addressed?

-Where are your warehouse locations in proximity to delivery locations? Ensure you have business continuity plans in place, so deliveries are not impacted.

-Do you have enough air capacity to address decreased passenger flights?

-Is an expedited ocean or sea-air being looked at as an alternate option?

Backup sourcing options

The current backlog in China is a prime example of the importance of a diversified supply chain – including modes of transportation, carriers and sourcing locations. When there is any kind of delayed start to production, keeping up with the workload poses a challenge, and backup sources may need to be considered. Additional sourcing options are not always easy to find and keeping up with the sheer demand and quality controls can be a challenge. Connecting with a global supply chain expert to vet reliable options is important to help ensure success.

While we may not know how long this global pandemic will last, C.H. Robinson’s global network of experts are dedicated to helping you get your shipments where they need to be. We continue to closely monitor the situation and provide updates through our client advisories as needed. We encourage you to reach out to your account manager or connect with an expert for additional questions.

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Sri Laxmana is the Vice President of Global Ocean Product at C.H. Robinson

salt

Asia’s Salt Market – India is the Largest and Fastest Growing Exporter in the Region

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘Asia – Salt – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The revenue of the salt market in Asia amounted to $8.3B in 2018, approximately equating the previous year. This figure reflects the total revenues of producers and importers (excluding logistics costs, retail marketing costs, and retailers’ margins, which will be included in the final consumer price). The market value increased at an average annual rate of +3.8% from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded over the period under review.

Consumption By Country

China (74M tonnes) remains the largest salt consuming country in Asia, comprising approx. 57% of total consumption. Moreover, salt consumption in China exceeded the figures recorded by the region’s second-largest consumer, India (16M tonnes), fivefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by Japan (5.7M tonnes), with a 4.4% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual rate of growth in terms of volume in China stood at +1.5%. The remaining consuming countries recorded the following average annual rates of consumption growth: India (+0.8% per year) and Japan (-0.9% per year).

In value terms, China ($5.3B) led the market, alone. The second position in the ranking was occupied by Pakistan ($435M). It was followed by Japan.

In 2018, the highest levels of salt per capita consumption was registered in Taiwan, Chinese (134 kg per person), followed by Turkey (63 kg per person), Saudi Arabia (61 kg per person) and South Korea (53 kg per person), while the world average per capita consumption of salt was estimated at 28 kg per person.

In Taiwan, Chinese, salt per capita consumption remained relatively stable over the period from 2007-2018. The remaining consuming countries recorded the following average annual rates of per capita consumption growth: Turkey (+5.3% per year) and Saudi Arabia (+0.7% per year).

Production in Asia

In 2018, approx. 124M tonnes of salt and pure sodium chloride were produced in Asia; growing by 2.1% against the previous year. The total output volume increased at an average annual rate of +2.3% from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern remained consistent, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations being observed in certain years. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2013 when production volume increased by 14% y-o-y. In that year, salt production reached its peak volume of 124M tonnes. From 2014 to 2018, salt production growth failed to regain its momentum.

In value terms, salt production totaled $8.2B in 2018 estimated in export prices. The total output value increased at an average annual rate of +3.3% over the period from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded in certain years.

Exports in Asia

In 2018, approx. 16M tonnes of salt and pure sodium chloride were exported in Asia; going up by 21% against the previous year. In general, salt exports continue to indicate buoyant growth. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2011 with an increase of 44% year-to-year. The volume of exports peaked in 2018 and are likely to continue its growth in the immediate term.

In value terms, salt exports amounted to $528M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. In general, salt exports continue to indicate prominent growth. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2008 when exports increased by 49% y-o-y. Over the period under review, salt exports reached their maximum in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the immediate term.

Exports by Country

India prevails in salt exports structure, reaching 13M tonnes, which was approx. 79% of total exports in 2018. It was distantly followed by China (1,448K tonnes), committing a 9% share of total exports. The following exporters – Kazakhstan (377K tonnes), Turkey (375K tonnes) and Pakistan (301K tonnes) – each finished at a 6.5% share of total exports.

From 2007 to 2018, average annual rates of growth with regard to salt exports from India stood at +25.1%. At the same time, Kazakhstan (+53.6%), Turkey (+26.7%), Pakistan (+18.1%) and China (+5.9%) displayed positive paces of growth. Moreover, Kazakhstan emerged as the fastest-growing exporter in Asia, with a CAGR of +53.6% from 2007-2018. While the share of India (+73 p.p.), China (+4.2 p.p.), Kazakhstan (+2.3 p.p.), Turkey (+2.2 p.p.) and Pakistan (+1.6 p.p.) increased significantly, the shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.

In value terms, India ($227M) remains the largest salt supplier in Asia, comprising 43% of total salt exports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by China ($93M), with a 18% share of total exports. It was followed by Pakistan, with a 9.8% share.

In India, salt exports increased at an average annual rate of +22.2% over the period from 2007-2018. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: China (+9.1% per year) and Pakistan (+28.6% per year).

Export Prices by Country

In 2018, the salt export price in Asia amounted to $33 per tonne, dropping by -2.5% against the previous year. Overall, the salt export price continues to indicate a noticeable downturn. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2008 when the export price increased by 26% year-to-year. In that year, the export prices for salt and pure sodium chloride reached their peak level of $63 per tonne. From 2009 to 2018, the growth in terms of the export prices for salt and pure sodium chloride failed to regain its momentum.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of origin; the country with the highest price was Pakistan ($171 per tonne), while India ($18 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Pakistan, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

artificial intelligence

Artificial Intelligence Market to Reach $54 Billion by 2026

According to a new study published by Polaris Market Research, the global artificial intelligence market is anticipated to reach USD 54 billion by 2026. The advancements of robots and the rise in their deployment rate particularly, in the developing economies globally have had a positive impact on the global artificial intelligence market.

Augmented customer experience, expanded application areas, enhanced productivity, and big data integration have highly propelled the artificial intelligence market worldwide. Although, the absence of adequate skilled workforce, as well as threat to human dignity, are some of the factors that could affect the growth of the market. However, these factors are expected to have minimal impact on the market attributed to the introduction of advanced technologies.

An extraordinary increase in productivity has been achieved with machine-learning. For instance, Google, with the help of its experimental driverless technology has transformed cars including, Toyota Prius. The integration of various tools by artificial intelligence has helped in the transformation of business management. These tools include brand purchase advertising, workflow management tools, trend predictions among others. For example, Google’s voice accuracy technology has a 98% accuracy rate. Furthermore, Facebook’s DeepFace technology has a success rate of approximately 97% in recognizing faces. Such accuracy in technologies is further anticipated to bolster the market growth during the forecast period.

Currently, North America dominates the global artificial intelligence market attributed to the high government funding availability, existence of prominent providers in the region, and robust technical adoption base. Also, the region is expected to continue its dominance during the forecast period. Moreover, the adoption of cloud-based services in key economies, such as the US and Canada, is considering adding to the market growth in the North American region. The markets in Asia Pacific, MEA and South America region are expected to notice a high growth during the coming years. The growth in the Asia Pacific region is attributed to the increasing demand for artificial technologies by the developing economies. Thus, the region is anticipated to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period.

 

Major companies profiled in the report include Google Inc., Intel Corporation, Nvidia Corporation, Microsoft Corporation, IBM Corporation, General Vision, Inc., Qlik Technologies Inc., MicroStrategy, Inc., Brighterion, Inc., and Baidu, Inc. among others.

Key Findings from the study suggest North America is expected to command the market over the forecast years. APAC is presumed to be the fastest-growing market, developing at a CAGR of more than 65% over the forecast period. The artificial intelligence market is presumed to develop at a CAGR of over 55.9% from 2018 to 2026. The high implementation of artificial intelligence in several end-user verticals including, retail, automotive and healthcare is projected to boost the growth of the market over the forecast period. Several companies are making considerable investments to integrate artificial intelligence competencies into their portfolio of products. For instance, in 2016, SK Telecom and Intel Corporation signed an agreement for the development of the artificial intelligence-based vehicle-to-everything (V2X) technology as well as video recognition.

For More Information About Artificial Intelligence Market @ https://www.polarismarketresearch.com/industry-analysis/artificial-intelligence-market/request-for-customization