New Articles

U.S. – Fruits, Nuts And Peel (Sugar Preserved) – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights

fruits nuts

U.S. – Fruits, Nuts And Peel (Sugar Preserved) – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘U.S. – Fruits, Nuts And Peel (Sugar Preserved) – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

Exports from the U.S.

In 2018, the amount of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) exported from the U.S. stood at 5.2K tonnes, shrinking by -7.3% against the previous year. Overall, exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) continue to indicate a slight reduction. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2009 with an increase of 42% y-o-y. Exports peaked at 9.3K tonnes in 2015; however, from 2016 to 2018, exports failed to regain their momentum.

In value terms, exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) totaled $11M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Over the period under review, exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) continue to indicate a slight contraction. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2009 with an increase of 76% against the previous year. In that year, exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) reached their peak of $21M. From 2010 to 2018, the growth of exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) failed to regain its momentum.

Exports by Country

Canada (1.8K tonnes) was the main destination for exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) from the U.S., with a 35% share of total exports. Moreover, exports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) to Canada exceeded the volume sent to the second major destination, Saudi Arabia (385 tonnes), fivefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by China (352 tonnes), with a 6.8% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual rate of growth in terms of volume to Canada stood at +16.1%. Exports to the other major destinations recorded the following average annual rates of exports growth: Saudi Arabia (+11.9% per year) and China (+9.2% per year).

In value terms, Canada ($2.7M), China ($1.6M) and Turkey ($888K) constituted the largest markets for sweetened dried fruit and nut exported from the U.S. worldwide, together accounting for 46% of total exports.

Turkey recorded the highest growth rate of exports, among the main countries of destination over the last eleven-year period, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Export Prices by Country

The average export price for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) stood at $2,198 per tonne in 2018, coming down by -1.5% against the previous year. Over the period under review, the export price for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved), however, continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2009 an increase of 25% year-to-year. In that year, the average export prices for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) attained their peak level of $2,776 per tonne. From 2010 to 2018, the growth in terms of the average export prices for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) failed to regain its momentum.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of destination; the country with the highest price was Turkey ($4,656 per tonne), while the average price for exports to Australia ($983 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was recorded for supplies to Taiwan, Chinese, while the prices for the other major destinations experienced more modest paces of growth.

Imports into the U.S.

In 2018, the imports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) into the U.S. totaled 9.4K tonnes, picking up by 22% against the previous year. In general, imports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved), however, continue to indicate a slight downturn. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2018 with an increase of 22% y-o-y. Imports peaked at 12K tonnes in 2010; however, from 2011 to 2018, imports failed to regain their momentum.

In value terms, imports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) stood at $32M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. The total import value increased at an average annual rate of +2.3% from 2007 to 2018; however, the trend pattern remained consistent, with somewhat noticeable fluctuations being recorded in certain years. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2010 with an increase of 18% year-to-year. Over the period under review, imports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) reached their peak figure in 2018 and are likely to continue its growth in the near future.

Imports by Country

In 2018, Thailand (4.5K tonnes) constituted the largest supplier of sweetened dried fruit and nut to the U.S., with a 48% share of total imports. Moreover, imports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) from Thailand exceeded the figures recorded by the second-largest supplier, China (827 tonnes), fivefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by Fiji (722 tonnes), with a 7.7% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual growth rate of volume from Thailand totaled -1.1%. The remaining supplying countries recorded the following average annual rates of imports growth: China (-1.9% per year) and Fiji (+20.1% per year).

In value terms, Thailand ($14.2M) constituted the largest supplier of sweetened dried fruit and nut to the U.S., comprising 45% of total imports of fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved). The second position in the ranking was occupied by Fiji ($3.5M), with a 11% share of total imports. It was followed by China, with a 11% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual growth rate of value from Thailand totaled +3.4%. The remaining supplying countries recorded the following average annual rates of imports growth: Fiji (+23.8% per year) and China (+0.5% per year).

Import Prices by Country

In 2018, the average import price for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) amounted to $3,379 per tonne, falling by -9.4% against the previous year. Overall, the import price indicated a noticeable increase from 2007 to 2018: its price increased at an average annual rate of +3.5% over the last eleven-year period. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2018 figures, import price for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) increased by +54.7% against 2009 indices. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2013 an increase of 27% year-to-year. Over the period under review, the average import prices for fruits, nuts and peel (sugar preserved) reached their peak figure at $3,729 per tonne in 2017, and then declined slightly in the following year.

There were significant differences in the average prices amongst the major supplying countries. In 2018, the country with the highest price was Fiji ($4,917 per tonne), while the price for India ($1,887 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

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

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

global

GLOBAL FORWARDING: BIGGEST, FASTEST SAVINGS FOR GLOBAL SUPPLY CHAINS

Increasingly complex omnichannel business models are resulting
in correspondingly complicated global supply chains. Maximizing
efficiencies for time and cost in moving freight around the world
is mission critical. This paper takes a high-level look at three
opportunities for optimization: cargo consolidation, cargo risk
management, and customs management.

The multichannel retail business model, along with increasing levels of global sourcing, have created staggering opportunities for importers and exporters around the world, whether huge multinationals or small companies shipping globally for the first time.

Global supply chains are becoming longer and more fragmented,
presenting significant new issues for logistics professionals. In one
survey, 104 global supply chain executives reported that visibility
(21.1%), fluctuating consumer demand (19.1%), and inventory
management (13.2%) were their biggest challenges (1).

Many factors add complexity to global supply chains, including longer lead times and lead-time variability and an increasing number of suppliers, partners, carriers, customers, countries, and logistics channels. Contrary to what you might think, global freight forwarding can offer relief for these concerns and when people, processes, and technology are leveraged, can even offer competitive advantages.

10 Approaches to Savings in the Global
Forwarding Supply Chain

EASY

1. Align shipping activities to leverage benefits of consolidation
services.

2. Minimize financial impact of cargo loss and damage by
purchasing marine cargo insurance.

3. Take advantage of transportation providers’ TMS to create
visibility and take control of the supply chain.

MODERATE

4. Develop strategies to match service modes with inventory
planning and sales forecasting.

5. Create a risk management strategy—identify and understand
risk types, probabilities, and potential costs.

6. Integrate with a single transportation provider’s TMS and
connect with suppliers and carriers globally.

DIFFICULT

7. Effectively use Incoterms® when negotiating with suppliers to
impact unit price, cash flow, inventory levels, and logistics costs.8. Actively engage with a customs professional to deploy best
practices in customs management.

9. Leverage transportation provider’s business intelligence
reporting and analytics to improve supply chain performance.

10. Utilize PO management to control the purchase order lifecycle;
go upstream to supplier order fulfillment logistics activities.

CARGO CONSOLIDATION

What it is
Few companies can fill an entire ocean or air container with their
own freight. Both ocean and air carriers require shippers to work
with freight consolidation services to accommodate small volume
shipping needs. These freight consolidators accept complementary
freight from multiple shippers, and consolidate freight all kinds
(FAK) containers for ocean shipping or unit load devices (ULD) for
air. This results in better freight rates and cargo security measures.

Why it’s important
One of the biggest areas for savings in a global supply chain is
taking advantage of space. Companies of any size can use freight
consolidation services, but it’s particularly useful if you have a lean
supply chain or operate in a just in time environment. Using logistics
efficiencies from freight forwarders, consolidators, and third party
logistics providers (3PLs), you can choose to move smaller quantities
of material more frequently. In doing so, you make a strategic
decision to spend more on consolidation shipping services and less
on inventory, storage, returns, and other costs.

Ocean versus air
Whether air or ocean consolidation is the right choice for you
depends on the required service level and transit time. Globally,
ocean is the less expensive transportation method. That cost
advantage must be carefully weighed against longer transit times, as
well as potential delays caused by adverse weather conditions, port
strikes, or other issues.

In addition, there are faster and slower ocean options. Some ocean
freight goes directly to the port of call. Other shipments can stop at
multiple ports of call, which is less expensive, but takes longer and
is more prone to unexpected disruption. Working with a reputable
freight forwarder can help reduce unexpected supply chain failures
and delays, and provide options if disruptions occur.

Air freight consolidation service is a faster, more expensive option
than ocean, but here, too, there are faster and slower options that
determine the cost. For example, if you don’t need direct service
(next flight out), choose a slower transit time at more favorable
pricing.

Best Practices for Cargo Consolidation

Choose a forwarder with:

-Sufficient freight volumes to effectively consolidate without delays and to aggressively negotiate rates with ocean and air carriers.

-Dedicated space allocations for capabilities when they are needed.

– Work in major markets with high flight capacity.

Generally, in any type of transportation, the more time there is between pickup and delivery, the less you pay. In air, for instance, use providers with gateways (vs. a hub and spoke approach)
to get cost-efficient options that meet your deadlines. Use consolidation schedules if you can for more savings.

CARGO RISK MANAGEMENT

What it is
Global shipments are exposed to risk from a wide range of human
and natural forces. Yet, global shipments are subject to a unique set
of international laws and/or treaties that limit the liability of carriers. Whether you import or export, you should understand the various types of risks that cargo could face and how you can help protect the value of the goods shipped globally.

Why it’s important
Even with proper packing, stowage, and securing of containers on
a container ship, severe weather and rough seas can cause rare but
catastrophic events like ship groundings, structural failures, even
collisions, any of which can result in loss of cargo. On average, the
World Shipping Council estimates that there were 1,582 containers
lost at sea per year between 2008 and 2016; 1,012 of these
containers (64 percent) were lost due to a catastrophic event.2 Theft, counterfeiting, hurricanes, floods, political unrest, labor disputes, documentation errors, or mechanical problems can also delay or ruin delivery of the most perfectly planned global shipment. Protecting the value of products while they are in transit across the globe can have a significant impact in protecting the bottom line.

Air and Ocean Carrier Liability

When events occur, companies are often dismayed to find that not
all risks or damages are covered by carrier liability.

Air carriers are not liable if damage was caused by:
-An inherent defect, quality, or vice of the cargo
-Defective or insufficient packing of the cargo
-An act of war or armed conflict
-An act of a public authority carried out in connection with the
entry, exit, or transit of the cargo

Even if an air carrier is held legally liable for damages, they pay the
value of the goods or 19 SDRs3 per kilogram, whichever is less.
If a ship experiences an extraordinary sacrifice or expenditure at sea,ship owners may declare general average. The concept of general average hearkens back to the days when a crew tossed cargo overboard to lighten the ship in a storm. During the emergency, there wasn’t time to figure out whose cargo should be jettisoned. After the fact, to avoid quarreling, merchants whose cargo landed safely would be called upon to contribute a share or percentage to the merchants whose goods were tossed overboard to avoid imminent peril. Today, general average declarations still mean that all the merchants with freight on the vessel are required to share in the cost of the expenditure before the goods are released.

General average is a growing risk and concern for many risk
managers and insurance experts. In recent times, there has been a
rise in the frequency and severity of extreme weather events that
have led many vessels to become grounded, causing container loss
and/or vessel damage. In addition, fires on container vessels are
more common now than in the past.

Today, when these events occur and general average is declared:

1. Ship owners have a lien on the ship’s cargo. At the time
the voyage is completed, the level of sacrificial losses will not
normally be known. Ship owners will usually call for security
from cargo interests, against which the assessed contributions
can be enforced. The amount of the claim is usually calculated
by average adjusters, appointed by ship owners. Each cargo
owner’s contribution is calculated on a percentage of the cargo
owner’s interest or commercial invoice value, ranging from
1 to 100 percent.

Ship owners have a lien on the cargo until each cargo owner’s
contribution or security is satisfied. Unless a shipment is secured
with all-risk marine cargo insurance, the cargo owner will be
required to post their contribution or security in cash before
their cargo will be released. As the frequency of general average
declarations has increased, so has the amount of the required
securities—from about 12% a year ago to about 50% today.

2. Ocean carriers are not automatically liable for loss or
damage to your cargo. The U.S. accepted the Hague Rules in
1936 through the passage of the Carriage of Goods by Sea Act
(COGSA). The rules expressly remove the ocean carrier’s liability
for loss or damage to cargo that arises from one of the 17 stated
liability exclusions. Legal liability claims are often met with
resistance by carriers.

Even if the ocean carrier is found liable at the end of a legal
process that can take months to settle, their limit of liability
under COGSA is $500 per package or customary shipping
unit, or the actual value of the goods, whichever is less. In other
words, the onus is on you to assess and minimize your
risk exposure.

Best Practices for Cargo Risk Management

-Buy the appropriate amount of marine cargo insurance for ocean or air shipments.

-Ensure the valuation clause for a given shipment defines the maximum amount an insurance company will pay for a loss. Most valuation clauses include the commercial invoice value and any prepaid charges associated with the shipment, such as freight, customs clearance, or duty. This clause can be modified to include other charges or profit margin—if requested and approved by underwriters.

-Choose an insurance intermediary with experience or specific training in international logistics and transportation insurance.

Calculating Costs to Determine Risk Exposure

The risk of lost cargo is real. Yet, without a crisis to motivate
action, most companies place risk management at the bottom of
the priority scale. The most common method used to protect the
value of goods from physical damage, theft, or other calamity is the
purchase of marine cargo insurance.

The first step you can take is to understand your risk exposure
by tying dollar values to varying types of risk. The challenge is
quantifying the potential cost. You can brainstorm to gather that
information, or can work with a logistics provider that has in-house
risk management professionals to help uncover potential liabilities
in the supply chain.

You can apply subjective probability to calculate possible losses. In
other words, you can estimate the chances of a risk event happening
and multiply it by the cost if it did happen (see below). Once the
dollar amount is calculated, the next step is to reduce the expected
loss by reducing the probability of the occurrence, or the cost of the
occurrence.

Armed with subjective probability estimates, you can effectively
buy the appropriate amount of insurance. While insurance is readily
available, it is your responsibility or the consignee’s to ensure the
coverage purchased best fits the unique exposure.

CUSTOMS MANAGEMENT

What it is
Most companies choose their customs broker for the long term.
That’s because the customs broker must truly understand your
company and products. They must also know how to navigate each
country’s compliance requirements with their own specific set of
customs rules, governmental regulations, VAT, duty rate calculations, and payment plans.

Why it’s important
Even simple trade-related mistakes, such as an incorrect spelling on
a declaration, can result in fines, penalties, or even cargo seizure.
Penalties for transgressions can be severe, depending on the
seriousness of the infraction.

For example, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) imposes
fines of up to $10,000 per entry for recordkeeping infractions.
Non-financial costs, such a shipment delays, the diversion of staff
resources to correct problems, and in rare instances, the loss of
trade privileges, can be detrimental to an importer’s business.
When you work with Trusted Advisor® experts in customs, you can
learn where the most common mistakes occur and implement best
practices to avoid them. In addition, CBP can conduct a customs
focused assessment—essentially, an audit—with any U.S. importer. A
customs expert can help your company prepare before, during, and
after a focused assessment to minimize risk exposure.

Compliance programs and options that are worth investigating
Not every compliance option will fit or resonate with every business.
Discuss specific issues with an attorney or Trusted Advisor® expert
in customs compliance and learn which elements might be the most
useful. Always seek out an expert opinion.

-Customs bond sufficiency. If you import into the U.S., you must
have a customs bond, generally 10% of the duties and taxes
you expect to pay to CBP for import transactions throughout
the year. CBP can shut down all imports if they discover you
have an insufficient customs bond. Since tariffs (and duties)
are increasing substantially, existing bonds may no longer
be sufficient. Bond insufficiency will lead to additional costs
and delays if not monitored or addressed in a timely manner.

Consider the increased duty amounts well before the bond
renewal period comes up. If the customs bond will need to be
significantly higher, the surety company may require additional
documentation—including financial statements and possibly
letters of credit—before they issue a new customs bond, all of
which will take time to get into place.

-Duty drawback programs. Duty drawback programs refund
99% of certain import duties, taxes, and fees for goods that are
subsequently exported; this supports both U.S. manufacturing
and foreign export sales. Before 2018, duties might only have
been in the 1% to 2% range, and since there is paperwork to file
to get the refund, many companies did not bother with it. Today,
those 1.2% duties have jumped up to 25% in some instances,
making duty drawback programs a potential game-changer for
your business. The downside: duties must be paid up front; your
company may wait for 1 to 2 years to receive the refund under
the current drawback environment, which can become a cash
flow issue for some companies.

-Foreign trade zones (FTZs). Foreign Trade Zones (FTZ) are
secure areas located in or near CBP ports of entry, and are under
CBP supervision. Unlike duty drawback programs, companies
don’t have to pay duties when goods enter an FTZ. Instead, FTZs
enable duty deferment; the duties are paid when the goods
enter CBP territory for domestic consumption. At that point, the
importer pays the duties at the rate of either the original foreign
materials or the finished product.

-Exclusion requests. If a company thinks their product should
be excluded from Section 232 and Section 301 tariffs, they can
request an exclusion. When filing an exclusion, make certain that
the classification used is the best classification for the product.
Also, work with a trade attorney; they can help you navigate
the law and apply it to a specific product so the exclusion isn’t
rejected on a technicality.

-Changing sourcing locations. It’s not always easy to change
suppliers, but some companies are looking at it in a new era of
tariffs. Yet, suppliers for some materials are only found in China,
and even if you locate a source in another country, there can be
issues. Can they supply at the necessary level? How long will it
take to test the new supplier against specifications? The more complicated the product, the more challenging a switch will be.
Also, keep in mind that if the cargo ships from Singapore but its
origin is China, U.S. tariffs may still apply.

-Incoterms®. Incoterms®, or International Commercial Terms,
are published by the International Chamber of Commerce.
They are the rules that define the responsibilities of sellers and
buyers for the delivery of goods under sales contracts, and
they establish where the transfer of risk takes place. However,
they vary from situation to situation. For example, if a container
being moved across the ocean from Shanghai to the United
States falls overboard, who is at risk? The Incoterms® tell the
story. If the U.S. buyer purchased the product FOB (free on
board), the importer took responsibility for the risk as soon as
the freight was loaded on the vessel in Shanghai. If the same
product was purchased DDP (delivered duty paid), the shipper
would be responsible until the product reached the purchaser’s
door in the United States. You can save money if you ensure
your purchasing team understands how Incoterms® rules will be
applied to freight.

Best practices in Customs Management

-Buyers are not transportation and compliance professionals who understand Incoterms®—they choose suppliers based on favorable pricing. You can establish internal structures or education to help buyers understand how Incoterms® impact risk management and pricing.

-Rely on a customs professional to leverage U.S. Customs data. They can combine a company’s unwieldy historical shipping data into usable trade reports to reveal whether an organization is taking proper advantage of free trade agreements around the world.

GLOBAL TECHNOLOGY CAN TIE IT ALL TOGETHER

As companies large and small continue to expand internationally,
they can no longer afford to single-handedly manage the countless
details and nuances of global freight forwarding. Shortened lead
times, the use of multiple transportation modes and carriers to
deliver product efficiently across continents, and an environment
fraught with risk requires both worldwide and regional management
of cargo flows.

Many companies rely on a transportation management system
(TMS), hoping to keep their fingers on the pulse of their global
supply chain providers. However, TMS products were developed
initially to track domestic or regional truck shipments and to
automate tedious, low-value processes performed by an enterprise’s
transportation staff. Today, few TMSs can enable global visibility to
every shipment, or can interconnect disparate systems on multiple
continents to provide the level of visibility to show where products
are at any given point in time.

A truly global supply chain network has a single TMS architecture
that spans all continents. Global visibility enables your organization
to clearly see the entire supply chain. Utilization reports for multiple
services and modes (air, ocean, rail, and road) on all continents
confers specific strategic advantages:

-Continuous improvement to supply chain logistics in real time

-Access to business intelligence, crossing all freight and spend.categories to strategically understand the impact of decisions

-Access to a centralized network of multiple providers–without
integrating individually with each provider

Work with a logistics provider that offers a full suite of services,
manages service performance, consistently communicates
performance metrics, and offers strategic optimization to gain
distinct advantages in the marketplace.

A case in point: purchase order management

-Purchase order management (POM) within a TMS delivers end to end visibility throughout the purchase order (PO) life cycle. POM enables you or your provider to manage shipment windows, work
with overseas vendors to coordinate bookings, manage exceptions,
collect and distribute documents, and provide reporting at the shipment and PO/line item level.

-POM options include PO tracking and visibility, reporting, online booking, document management, check and verification process, vendor self-service, vendor management, exception management,
and PO and shipment analytics.

5 Questions to Ask a Potential Global Freight Forwarder

IS YOUR TMS TRULY GLOBAL? There should be one system architecture that works across regions and covers all types of transportation.

CAN YOU PROVIDE CAPACITY OPTIONS?
They should ship goods by ocean, air, rail, and truck,
choosing the option that best aligns with the business
need. Ask about their consolidation programs to
optimize spend, routings, and transit time performance.

DO YOU HAVE “BOOTS ON THE GROUND” IN KEY
GEOGRAPHIC REGIONS?
Your global freight forwarder should think globally, act locally.
That is, they should know global transportation, but also
have deep knowledge of the local population, infrastructure,
languages, politics, economy, customs, currencies, tax laws,
and tariffs for each country your shipping routes touch.

CAN YOU HELP ASSESS CARGO RISK?
They must adequately help you assess and mitigate cargo
risk to help protect your bottom line.

DO YOU OFFER CUSTOMS ADVICE?
They should be experts in leveraging customs information
and programs to your company’s advantage.

 

_________________________________________________

1. “What is the biggest challenge you are facing in your supply
chain?” eft Supply Chain & Logistics Business Intelligence,
April 2018. Accessed at https://www.statista.com/
statistics/829634/biggest-challenges-supply-chain/.

2. “Containers Lost at Sea-2017 Update,” World Shipping
Council, 2017.

3. SDRs, or Special Drawing Rights, refers to a basket
of currencies designed to iron out currency exchange
fluctuations in International valuations, now used to express
the limitation under the Hague-Visby Rules and the MSA
Limitation Convention.

4. “Global Trade, Trade Statistics,” World Shipping Council,
2018. Accessed at http://www.worldshipping.org/about-theindustry/global-trade.

5. “Containers Lost at Sea-2017 Update,” World Shipping
Council, 2017.

6. Larry Kivett and Mark Pearson, “Understanding risk
management in the supply chain: Using supply chain data
analytics to drive performance,” Deloitte, 2018.

St. Lawrence Seaway

TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY CHAO COMMEMORATES ST. LAWRENCE SEAWAY’S 60TH ANNIVERSARY

U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao marked the 60th anniversary of the St. Lawrence Seaway, the U.S.-Canadian waterway, at a Sept. 24 ceremony at the Eisenhower Lock in Massena, New York. 

“For 60 years, the St. Lawrence Seaway has been a safe and reliable gateway for global commerce, further demonstrating our nation’s strong and strategic partnership with Canada,” Chao said.

She was joined by Transport Canada Director General of Marine Policy Marc-Yves Bertin, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-New York), U.S. Seaway Deputy Administrator Craig Middlebrook, Canadian Seaway President and CEO Terence Bowles and U.S. and Canadian government and transportation officials.

 Chao and Representative Stefanik also used the event to announce $6 million in funding for the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. to construct a new Visitors’ Center at the U.S. Eisenhower Lock. This new center will welcome the tens of thousands of people from around the world who come to watch ships transit the lock each year, and serve as a cornerstone for tourism in the North Country region of New York.

The bi-national waterway was officially opened in 1959 by Queen Elizabeth II and President Dwight D. Eisenhower. It has been proclaimed as one of the 10 most outstanding engineering achievements of the past 100 years. Since its inception, nearly 3 billion tons of cargo, valued at over $450 billion, have been transported via the Seaway

chicken egg

Chicken Egg Market in Eastern Europe – Russia’s Production Is Growing Rapidly, Driven by Strong Domestic Demand and Expanding Exports

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

The revenue of the chicken egg market in Eastern Europe amounted to $9.7B in 2018, surging by 6.6% against 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). Over the period under review, chicken egg consumption continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 when the market value increased by 13% against the previous year. The level of chicken egg consumption peaked at $10.8B in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, consumption stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Consumption By Country in Eastern Europe

The country with the largest volume of chicken egg consumption was Russia (2.6M tonnes), accounting for 54% of total consumption. Moreover, chicken egg consumption in Russia exceeded the figures recorded by the region’s second-largest consumer, Ukraine (898K tonnes), threefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by Poland (345K tonnes), with a 7.2% share.

In Russia, chicken egg consumption expanded at an average annual rate of +1.6% over the period from 2007-2018. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: Ukraine (+1.0% per year) and Poland (-3.8% per year).

In value terms, the largest chicken egg markets in Eastern Europe were Ukraine ($4.5B), Russia ($2.8B) and Hungary ($673M), together accounting for 82% of the total market.

The countries with the highest levels of chicken egg per capita consumption in 2018 were Ukraine (20 kg per person), Belarus (18 kg per person) and Russia (18 kg per person).

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of chicken egg per capita consumption, amongst the main consuming countries, was attained by Russia, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Market Forecast 2019-2025 in Eastern Europe

Driven by increasing demand for chicken egg in Eastern Europe, the market is expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next seven years. Market performance is forecast to retain its current trend pattern, expanding with an anticipated CAGR of +0.8% for the seven-year period from 2018 to 2025, which is projected to bring the market volume to 5.1M tonnes by the end of 2025.

Production in Eastern Europe

The chicken egg production amounted to 5.1M tonnes in 2018, therefore, remained relatively stable against the previous year. Overall, chicken egg production continues to indicate mild growth. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2010 when production volume increased by 3.2% against the previous year. The volume of chicken egg production peaked in 2018 and is expected to retain its growth in the near future. The general positive trend in terms of chicken egg output was largely conditioned by slight growth of the number of producing animals and a relatively flat trend pattern in yield figures.

In value terms, chicken egg production stood at $11.3B in 2018 estimated in export prices. The total output value increased at an average annual rate of +1.4% from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded in certain years. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 with an increase of 39% against the previous year. The level of chicken egg production peaked at $12B in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, production stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Production By Country in Eastern Europe

Russia (2.5M tonnes) constituted the country with the largest volume of chicken egg production, comprising approx. 50% of total production. Moreover, chicken egg production in Russia exceeded the figures recorded by the region’s second-largest producer, Ukraine (895K tonnes), threefold. The third position in this ranking was occupied by Poland (600K tonnes), with a 12% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual rate of growth in terms of volume in Russia totaled +1.6%. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: Ukraine (+0.9% per year) and Poland (+0.8% per year).

Producing Animals in Eastern Europe

In 2018, approx. 444M heads of producing animals were grown in Eastern Europe; approximately reflecting the previous year. This number increased at an average annual rate of +1.1% over the period from 2007 to 2018; the trend pattern remained relatively stable, with only minor fluctuations being observed over the period under review. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2012 with an increase of 5.3% y-o-y. Over the period under review, this number attained its peak figure level in 2018 and is likely to continue its growth in the near future.

Yield in Eastern Europe

In 2018, the average chicken egg yield in Eastern Europe totaled 11 kg per head, remaining stable against the previous year. Over the period under review, the chicken egg yield continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2009 when yield increased by 7% year-to-year. In that year, the chicken egg yield attained its peak level of 12 kg per head. From 2010 to 2018, the growth of the chicken egg yield remained at a lower figure.

Exports in Eastern Europe

In 2018, approx. 437K tonnes of chicken eggs were exported in Eastern Europe; rising by 6.8% against the previous year. Over the period under review, chicken egg exports continue to indicate resilient growth. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 when exports increased by 91% year-to-year. The volume of exports peaked in 2018 and are likely to see steady growth in the immediate term.

In value terms, chicken egg exports amounted to $657M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. In general, chicken egg exports continue to indicate a buoyant expansion. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 when exports increased by 53% against the previous year. The level of exports peaked in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the immediate term.

Exports by Country

Poland prevails in chicken egg exports structure, finishing at 267K tonnes, which was near 61% of total exports in 2018. Belarus (40K tonnes) took the second position in the ranking, followed by Russia (33K tonnes), Latvia (23K tonnes) and the Czech Republic (20K tonnes). All these countries together occupied approx. 27% share of total exports. Bulgaria (15K tonnes) and Romania (12K tonnes) followed a long way behind the leaders.

Poland was also the fastest-growing in terms of the chicken eggs exports, with a CAGR of +21.8% from 2007 to 2018. At the same time, Russia (+19.2%), Bulgaria (+15.5%), the Czech Republic (+6.4%), Latvia (+5.8%), Romania (+5.6%) and Belarus (+2.5%) displayed positive paces of growth. From 2007 to 2018, the share of Poland, Russia, Bulgaria, Latvia, the Czech Republic and Belarus increased by +54%, +6.5%, +2.8%, +2.4%, +2.3% and +2.2% percentage points, while the shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.

In value terms, Poland ($402M) remains the largest chicken egg supplier in Eastern Europe, comprising 61% of total chicken egg exports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by the Czech Republic ($43M), with a 6.5% share of total exports. It was followed by Bulgaria, with a 5.2% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual growth rate of value in Poland amounted to +19.0%. The remaining exporting countries recorded the following average annual rates of exports growth: the Czech Republic (+2.1% per year) and Bulgaria (+11.2% per year).

Export Prices by Country

In 2018, the chicken egg export price in Eastern Europe amounted to $1,504 per tonne, picking up by 3.6% against the previous year. Over the period under review, the chicken egg export price, however, continues to indicate a noticeable slump. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2017 when the export price increased by 24% against the previous year. Over the period under review, the export prices for chicken eggs attained their peak figure at $2,301 per tonne in 2007; however, from 2008 to 2018, export prices stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of origin; the country with the highest price was Bulgaria ($2,219 per tonne), while Belarus ($733 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Poland, while the other leaders experienced a decline in the export price figures.

Imports in Eastern Europe

In 2018, the imports of chicken eggs in Eastern Europe stood at 182K tonnes, jumping by 6.4% against the previous year. The total imports indicated strong growth from 2007 to 2018: its volume increased at an average annual rate of +4.6% over the last eleven years. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2018 figures, chicken egg imports decreased by -6.8% against 2015 indices. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 with an increase of 20% y-o-y. The volume of imports peaked at 196K tonnes in 2015; however, from 2016 to 2018, imports stood at a somewhat lower figure.

In value terms, chicken egg imports amounted to $383M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Over the period under review, chicken egg imports continue to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2014 when imports increased by 20% y-o-y. In that year, chicken egg imports attained their peak of $489M. From 2015 to 2018, the growth of chicken egg imports remained at a lower figure.

Imports by Country

Russia represented the main importing country with an import of around 84K tonnes, which amounted to 46% of total imports. It was distantly followed by the Czech Republic (20K tonnes), Hungary (17K tonnes), Poland (12K tonnes), Lithuania (11K tonnes), Latvia (8.7K tonnes) and Romania (8.5K tonnes), together creating a 42% share of total imports.

Imports into Russia increased at an average annual rate of +6.5% from 2007 to 2018. At the same time, Hungary (+15.5%), Lithuania (+15.4%), Romania (+7.6%), Latvia (+3.7%) and Poland (+2.7%) displayed positive paces of growth. Moreover, Hungary emerged as the fastest-growing importer in Eastern Europe, with a CAGR of +15.5% from 2007-2018. The Czech Republic experienced a relatively flat trend pattern. While the share of Russia (+23 p.p.), Hungary (+7.3 p.p.), Lithuania (+4.6 p.p.), Romania (+2.6 p.p.), Poland (+1.6 p.p.) and Latvia (+1.6 p.p.) increased significantly, the shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.

In value terms, Russia ($208M) constitutes the largest market for imported chicken eggs in Eastern Europe, comprising 54% of total chicken egg imports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by the Czech Republic ($35M), with a 9% share of total imports. It was followed by Hungary, with a 7.2% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual growth rate of value in Russia amounted to +3.3%. In the other countries, the average annual rates were as follows: the Czech Republic (-4.1% per year) and Hungary (+10.6% per year).

Import Prices by Country

The chicken egg import price in Eastern Europe stood at $2,099 per tonne in 2018, picking up by 3.7% against the previous year. Overall, the chicken egg import price, however, continues to indicate a noticeable slump. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2017 an increase of 11% y-o-y. Over the period under review, the import prices for chicken eggs attained their maximum at $3,152 per tonne in 2007; however, from 2008 to 2018, import prices failed to regain their momentum.

There were significant differences in the average prices amongst the major importing countries. In 2018, the country with the highest price was Russia ($2,490 per tonne), while Latvia ($1,300 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Russia, while the other leaders experienced a decline in the import price figures.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

cold chain

Benefits of Cold Chain Warehousing Solutions

Not many people are familiar with cold chain warehouse solutions. However, if you are in any type of business dealing with perishable items, this is right up your alley. Cold chain warehousing is used to store items that need to be left in cool surroundings and that have a short shelf life. By using them you can prevent your items from spoiling, being attacked by insects and rotting. So, the goal is clear. Life of certain items needs to be prolonged and one of the most effective ways to accomplish this is by using cold-chain warehousing, also known as cold storage or refrigerated warehousing.

Types of products that are in need of cold chain warehousing 

First, you need to know which items are suitable to be stored in such a place. Not all items respond well to cool temperatures. The last thing you want is investing in something that you do not need, like cold storage. For example, after transporting fruits and vegetables it would be a great solution to store them in cold storage space. Hence, if your business involves some of these products you are on the right path of finding the best possible solution for your business load.

Supermarkets and other stores have a tendency to use cold storage for a lot of their goods that are not in store for sale. 

3 main groups of goods 

-Foods that are considered to be alive – fruits and vegetables

-Processed foods that are considered to be no longer alive – fish, meat and any other products that contain the fish and meat

-Items that do not necessarily need be stored in a cool or freezing atmosphere, but remain the freshest and of highest quality while in it (tobacco, beer, some oils, some types of flour, etc.)

There are two main options 

One of the great things about cold storage units is that there are many different variations. But, there are two main types of systems. First comes the vapor absorption system (VAS), followed by vapor compression system (VCS). These two systems are not cardinally different from one another. Yet, there are some important differences that need to be acknowledged. The main one being the technique in which energy input is fed to the system. To be sure you are making the right choice when making this large purchase, we strongly advise you to speak to an expert. Sooner or later you will have to learn the difference between the two systems.

Main benefits of cold chain warehouse solutions 

Still, you might not be persuaded and convinced that this type of storage will improve your business. Nonetheless, after reading these benefits, it is very likely that the next thing you do will be exploring your options in purchasing a cold storage unit. Cold chain warehousing solutions in combination with transport technologies for air cargo can be one of the best solutions for storing and moving perishable goods.

Fruits and vegetables are items that are very difficult to store because they are very sensitive to temperature and even humidity. 

The array of usage doesn’t limit you 

One great thing about cold storage is that the temperature within the unit can be easily adjusted. That isn’t all. In addition to temperature, humidity can also be controlled. Humidity, just like temperature, can be a huge factor in saving the freshness and quality of the items. These two benefits, with an airtight closing mechanism, make this a great storage option.

Customize to fit your needs 

More modern units can be customized so the temperature range and size of the unit specifically fit your storage needs. For instance, if you do not need freezing conditions, but dry and cool, your needs can be accommodated. This is a perfect option for those that import oils and fats. As a cherry on top, your unit can be fixed or portable. There is an abundance of options. All you have to do is choose the bests options for your business requirements.

Great backup and organizing option

This can be best described in an example. For argument’s sake, let’s say you are a restaurant owner. One day, out of the blue, the power shuts down and there is no electricity in your restaurant. If you are a fan of cold chain warehousing solutions, you might survive the electricity outage without any loses. If all goods are quickly moved and expedited to the cold storage space, it is very likely they will not lose their value and end up as garbage.

In the long run, you are saving money 

The initial investment is not small, but it will certainly save you money in the long run. Surely you know how much goods you’ve tossed in the past years. Imagine preserving and using or selling at least half of what you tossed. That can add up financially. Minimize waste and give yourself an option to purchase items in bigger bulks for a significantly lower price.

Investing in cold storage might initially turn out to be a financial hit, but it will pay off in the long run. Alt text: suitcase filled with dollar bills and with other bills around it.

______________________________________________________

Danny Segno is a New York native, but currently, she lives in Boynton Beach Florida. For the past two years, she has been working for Authority Moving Group, a professional moving company. Danny enjoys her job because she likes working with people and helping them. Since she is a customer care specialist, she focuses on customer satisfaction. 

 

CarrierGo

Blume CarrierGo Provides Motor Carriers with All-Encompassing Business Solutions

This year’s Intermodal Expo in Long Beach, California featured some of the latest solution offerings disrupting the transportation sector. Among leading industry experts including logistics and supply chain solutions provider, Blume Global unveiling their latest product offering, Blume CarrierGo. Blume Global boasts over 25 years of transportation solution offerings in the cloud enabling international multimodal operations including shipment planning, execution, visibility, invoicing, invoice processing & settlement.

“Blume CarrierGo is a product we created that offers our global network of 7,000-plus carriers more than just execution, adding more value for both the carriers and the drivers,” explains Glenn Jones, GVP Product Strategy at Blume Global. “CarrierGo is localized in 22 languages and utilized by customers around the globe, so it’s not limited to the United States. This solution enables carriers to increase turns per day while reducing empty miles and maximizing efficiencies.” 

The days of manual processes are becoming a thing of the past, particularly in transportation and carrier services as automation continues setting a new and more improved standard of streamlining operations. Blume CarrierGo solution identifies processes such as appointment scheduling for carriers lacking levels of automation needed for optimization. Another example is opportunities with street turns found within the Blume import and export-heavy freight forwarding customers.

“We have insight into what independent freight forwarders might not be able to see, such as import and export maps leading to an opportunity for a street turn recommendation or automatic allocation. Dwell times also provide an opportunity for automation. We may have 20, 30, or even 50 carriers trying to pick up containers out of the same terminal. By leveraging our visibility across multiple freight forwarders we can either make recommendations or we can delay making appointments through the insight we have into marine terminals with delays,” Jones adds. 

And how about invoicing? Blume covers all bases for carriers in terms of accessorials and eliminating the element of surprise when it comes to unpredictable charges backing up processing times. The Blume solutions process requires carriers to gain approval for accessorials before they even happen. 

“If a carrier needs to get to a port and they’re unable to, there might be a demurrage charge or there might be a carrier in a dwell time charge situation unexpectedly. They can gain approval from the buyer for that accessorial and when it appears on the invoice days – or hours later, there’s no surprise and the invoice will be processed faster,” Jones adds. “This is particularly useful for carriers in 3rd world countries, where the carriers tend to be much smaller and require payments quicker than what the freight terms offer,” Jones adds. 

Processes like these are found within the CarrierGo solution, providing maximized efficiencies and reducing costly and time-consuming overhead freight audits and manual payment processes. Carriers are not only paid on time, but have increased opportunity for invoice factoring discussions in international markets. This is a major differentiator found within the Blume solutions structure impacting global scale capabilities across the supply chain, creating seamless flows between all players and competitors in the multimodal sector. 

For more information about how Blume CarrierGo can improve your cargo needs, please visit booth 512 at Intermodal Expo or visit Blume Global on the web. 

__________________________________________________________

Glenn Jones, GVP Product Strategy, Blume Global

 Glenn has a proven track record of growing businesses by building and leading product management/marketing and R&D organizations to define, develop, position, and sell highly innovative and high value enterprise solutions delivered in the cloud. He was formerly the COO of Sweetbridge and the CTO of Steelwedge Software. He also held leadership positions at several other companies, including Elementum and E2Open.

Intermodal Expo

Intermodal Expo Brings the Best in Business and Expertise

September 15 marked the first day of this year’s IANA Intermodal Expo in Long Beach, California. This is no ordinary expo, however. While more than 125 exhibitors and 60 plus intermodal experts in attendance, this conference covers all bases for three days each year, leaving no unfinished business. It’s no wonder why some are referring to the paramount event as “all-encompassing” while addressing all tiers of business.

Whether you’re interested in learning about the latest and greatest in intermodal solutions or seeking the expertise from an industry expert on strategic planning, IANA’s Intermodal Expo undoubtedly provides a clear view of where the industry stands while navigating the current landscape.

Among leading companies in attendance discussing the latest and greatest topics, business strategies, trends, and solutions in intermodal and supply chain include Loadsmart, Armstrong & Associates, SeaIntelligence Consulting, Canadian National Railway (CN), United Parcel Service, BNSF Railway, and many more.

Technology and automation continue leading trends as more companies continue to report increasing demand for the capabilities, efficiencies, and opportunities enabled through innovation

“There’s always a force in this space right now that changes everything and one needs to be cognizant of that force,” explained Jeffrey Leppert, Senior Vice President, Capacity Solutions, Redwood Logistics during the “Growth Strategies for Non-Asset 3PLs session.

Maintaining an advantageous position against competitors in an evergreen business landscape can be tricky. Hunter Yaw, Vice President of Product Management and Business Development, at Loadsmart addressed this topic head-on, leaving all apprehensions aside.

“We focus on what systems our customers are currently using and we integrate a lot with major TMS systems. We could ask folks to come  to us one way or another but, the reality is… we’re much better off partnering with the existing players in the industry and teaming with them to add more value within the current system’s framework rather than try to reinvent the wheel across the board.”

As the final day quickly approaches, Intermodal Expo will resume at 8 a.m. sharp on Wednesday with the Intermodal Safety Committee Meeting followed by the Operations Committee Meeting.

Global Trade Magazine will continue participating throughout the remainder of the conference at booth 812 ready to discuss your business goals for growth and expansion. Come by and see us for the final day of Intermodal Expo 2019!

plantain

Africa’s Plantain Market to Reach Over 30M Tonnes by 2025

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

Consumption By Country in Africa

The countries with the highest volumes of plantain consumption in 2018 were Democratic Republic of the Congo (5.5M tonnes), Cameroon (4.8M tonnes) and Ghana (4.1M tonnes), together comprising 59% of total consumption.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of plantain consumption, amongst the main consuming countries, was attained by Democratic Republic of the Congo, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

The countries with the highest levels of plantain per capita consumption in 2018 were Cameroon (197 kg per person), Ghana (141 kg per person) and Uganda (68 kg per person).

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of plantain per capita consumption, amongst the main consuming countries, was attained by Democratic Republic of the Congo, while the other leaders experienced mixed trends in the per capita consumption figures.

Market Forecast 2019-2025

Driven by increasing demand for plantain in Africa, the market is expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next seven years. Market performance is forecast to retain its current trend pattern, expanding with an anticipated CAGR of +2.9% for the seven-year period from 2018 to 2025, which is projected to bring the market volume to 30M tonnes by the end of 2025.

Production in Africa

The plantain production stood at 25M tonnes in 2018, picking up by 3.6% against the previous year. The total output volume increased at an average annual rate of +3.0% from 2007 to 2018; however, the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2010 when production volume increased by 12% against the previous year. Over the period under review, plantain production attained its peak figure volume in 2018 and is likely to see steady growth in the near future. The general positive trend in terms of plantain output was largely conditioned by a conspicuous increase of the harvested area and a relatively flat trend pattern in yield figures.

Production By Country in Africa

The countries with the highest volumes of plantain production in 2018 were Democratic Republic of the Congo (5.5M tonnes), Cameroon (4.8M tonnes) and Ghana (4.1M tonnes), together comprising 59% of total production.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of plantain production, amongst the main producing countries, was attained by Democratic Republic of the Congo, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Harvested Area in Africa

The plantain harvested area amounted to 4.2M ha in 2018, growing by 3.7% against the previous year. The harvested area increased at an average annual rate of +2.9% over the period from 2007 to 2018; however, the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2010 with an increase of 14% against the previous year. Over the period under review, the harvested area dedicated to plantain production reached its peak figure at 4.3M ha in 2015; however, from 2016 to 2018, harvested area stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Yield in Africa

The average plantain yield amounted to 5.8 tonne per ha in 2018, approximately equating the previous year. In general, the plantain yield, however, continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2016 when yield increased by 1.6% y-o-y. The level of plantain yield peaked at 5.8 tonne per ha in 2009; however, from 2010 to 2018, yield stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Exports in Africa

The exports totaled 99K tonnes in 2018, dropping by -5.8% against the previous year. Overall, plantain exports continue to indicate an abrupt decrease. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2013 when exports increased by 27% year-to-year. The volume of exports peaked at 181K tonnes in 2007; however, from 2008 to 2018, exports remained at a lower figure.

In value terms, plantain exports amounted to $45M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Over the period under review, plantain exports continue to indicate a drastic descent. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2014 when exports increased by 13% year-to-year. The level of exports peaked at $85M in 2007; however, from 2008 to 2018, exports failed to regain their momentum.

Exports by Country

In 2018, Mozambique (38K tonnes) and Cote d’Ivoire (26K tonnes) were the main exporters of plantains in Africa, together making up 65% of total exports. It was distantly followed by Sudan (14K tonnes) and South Africa (12K tonnes), together committing a 27% share of total exports. The following exporters – Cameroon (3.2K tonnes) and Ghana (2.9K tonnes) – each accounted for a 6.1% share of total exports.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of exports, amongst the main exporting countries, was attained by Cote d’Ivoire, while the other leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, the largest plantain markets in Africa were Cote d’Ivoire ($12M), Sudan ($11M) and Mozambique ($11M), together accounting for 76% of total exports.

Sudan experienced the highest rates of growth with regard to exports, among the main exporting countries over the last eleven-year period, while the other leaders experienced mixed trends in the exports figures.

Export Prices by Country

In 2018, the plantain export price in Africa amounted to $454 per tonne, growing by 4.8% against the previous year. Overall, the plantain export price, however, continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2015 an increase of 11% year-to-year. Over the period under review, the export prices for plantains attained their maximum at $485 per tonne in 2012; however, from 2013 to 2018, export prices failed to regain their momentum.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of origin; the country with the highest price was Cameroon ($850 per tonne), while Ghana ($203 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Cameroon, while the other leaders experienced mixed trends in the export price figures.

Imports in Africa

The imports totaled 179K tonnes in 2018, picking up by 11% against the previous year. The total imports indicated a prominent expansion from 2007 to 2018: its volume increased at an average annual rate of +5.5% over the last eleven years. The trend pattern, however, indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. Based on 2018 figures, plantain imports increased by +20.7% against 2014 indices. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2013 with an increase of 19% year-to-year. Over the period under review, plantain imports reached their peak figure in 2018 and are likely to continue its growth in the immediate term.

In value terms, plantain imports totaled $51M (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. The total import value increased at an average annual rate of +1.8% from 2007 to 2018; however, the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded over the period under review. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2017 with an increase of 11% y-o-y. Over the period under review, plantain imports reached their maximum in 2018 and are expected to retain its growth in the near future.

Imports by Country

South Africa was the key importing country with an import of about 119K tonnes, which resulted at 66% of total imports. Senegal (29K tonnes) held the second position in the ranking, followed by Mali (17K tonnes). All these countries together took approx. 26% share of total imports. Botswana (5.1K tonnes) and Algeria (3.1K tonnes) occupied a little share of total imports.

Imports into South Africa increased at an average annual rate of +11.5% from 2007 to 2018. At the same time, Senegal (+19.5%) and Mali (+6.1%) displayed positive paces of growth. Moreover, Senegal emerged as the fastest-growing importer in Africa, with a CAGR of +19.5% from 2007-2018. By contrast, Botswana (-2.5%) and Algeria (-16.8%) illustrated a downward trend over the same period. From 2007 to 2018, the share of South Africa, Senegal and Mali increased by +46%, +14% and +4.6% percentage points, while Algeria (-11.4 p.p.) saw their share reduced. The shares of the other countries remained relatively stable throughout the analyzed period.

In value terms, South Africa ($27M) constitutes the largest market for imported plantains in Africa, comprising 53% of total plantain imports. The second position in the ranking was occupied by Senegal ($13M), with a 25% share of total imports. It was followed by Botswana, with a 6.4% share.

From 2007 to 2018, the average annual rate of growth in terms of value in South Africa totaled +9.2%. The remaining importing countries recorded the following average annual rates of imports growth: Senegal (+22.9% per year) and Botswana (-3.2% per year).

Import Prices by Country

In 2018, the plantain import price in Africa amounted to $284 per tonne, coming down by -1.9% against the previous year. Overall, the plantain import price continues to indicate a perceptible setback. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2015 when the import price increased by 12% year-to-year. The level of import price peaked at $421 per tonne in 2007; however, from 2008 to 2018, import prices failed to regain their momentum.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of destination; the country with the highest price was Algeria ($1,017 per tonne), while Mali ($64 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2007 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Algeria, while the other leaders experienced mixed trends in the import price figures.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

Deconstruction of the Value Chain

Why Large Shipping Lines Should Think About Asset-Sharing

In the past, companies have tried to optimize and unearth efficiency gains through value chain integration. Reason was that it is easier to communicate and optimize within a company than with external partners. Examples from container logistics include Maersk Line acquiring Damco as part of the P&O Nedlloyd acquisition and Amazon aiming to consolidate the entire value chain from factory to last mile delivery. 

In the literature, the explanations focus on lower transaction costs when communicating within an organization compared to the outside and the risk of “hold-ups” is better manageable if you can observe the entire value chain compared to just a small fraction. 

Extrapolation: You can argue that these factors and risks are the only reason why we have companies at all, those are basically just a way for humans to work together and communicate efficiently. In a sense, a company is just a collection of specialists who work together on a “platform” called a company. 

Technology Reduces Those Underlying Costs and Risks

Today, technology and digital platforms reduce transaction costs and remove risks. This makes the traditional “company borders” obsolete. We see that in the “gig” economy where specialists (from highly paid professionals such as lawyers and consultant to poorly paid uneducated “hands”) chose not to get a job in a company but instead offer their workforce on platforms – think of Uber, Fiverr and even Deliveroo. Interestingly, this does not quite fit into the B2B vs B2C vs C2C logic of the past but is rather P2B (“Platform-to-B”) or P2C: As a company or as a consumer I only need to join a platform to get access to a wide range of services without further need to search, compare or contract. 

“Traditional” B2B Markets Follow the Trend

We see the same happening in B2B! M&A activity will not remain the only logical way to increase efficiency along the value chain and to achieve economies of scale. Instead, platforms and digital technologies allow companies (no matter how small or specialised) to work together across company borders. On successful platforms, this is powered not only by efficient online processes, but supported by platform activities that increase trust such as peer reviews, performance information or payment handling. 

An industry perspective: “a simulated large, consolidated company” which operates equipment in an efficient, market-driven pool. Other examples that come to mind are platforms focused on the optimization of hinterland intermodal moves—improving communication between container carriers, freight forwarders, and trucker. 

Future: We Expect This Along the Entire Transportation Value Chain

Thinking about the future of shipping industry, we will see further deconstruction happening. Multiple “neutral” platforms will link together specialized actors along the value chain. Actors on the value chain will be much more specialized than today and instead of  seeing mega carriers covering the transport chain end-to-end, we’ll have actors such as equipment owner, vessel owner, vessel operator, slot marketer, agents in POL and POD, equipment tracking technology, ports, terminal, truckers, depots… 

An example: from an economic viewpoint (and when removing transaction costs / communication barriers and “holdup risks”) it makes only very little sense have “vessel operation” and “equipment ownership” done by the same party. In the case of equipment: Managing a pool allows you to balance out company-specific imbalances and reduce empty container moves! Container Leasing companies are a prime example where this already happens. 

Of course, this does not need to be fragmented down to the individual micro-service at all stages. Thinking back to our example before, that would mean that we don’t even have companies here anymore but just individual freelancers. Such companies can then also contribute 2, 3, 4 steps but we think the underlying logic is important: Deconsolidation makes sense! 

Additionally, there will be some clients who prefer buying from a consolidated entity instead of plugging-and-playing services on a platform. Consider a large shipper who wants to have a reliable long-term contract with stable rates and a single-point of contact -> this role will still exist and also create value (as they cater to a specific demand). Here you’ll also find strong “consumer” / “client” facing brand names such as Maersk. However, the way this “consolidator” then provides the service will change completely from an inhouse solution to an “on demand platform solution”. 

What we see in shipping is that fully integrated liners act like a “one-stop-shop” and try to offer everything even though their core business is ocean freight. Why shouldn’t forwarders or shippers bring their own containers and only book the vessel slot? When shippers bring their own boxes, containers are so-called shippers owned containers, SOC container in short. Such containers increase flexibility and create a win-win for shippers and carriers: Forwarders save demurrage charges, while carriers avoid time-consuming planning and can focus on what they’re good at: moving goods between continents and the sale of vessel slots! 

More and more shipping companies increase their SOC activities because online platforms provide them with access to global capacity and streamline processes of booking containers separately to the vessel slot. 

Container xChange is an example of how companies can work together on a neutral platform and share capabilities/ assets. It is not necessary anymore to take over your competitor to leverage a shared equipment pool of containers. More than 300 companies use this chance to access to world market and to have eyes and ears across the entire globe. It is also possible to add further services from 3rd parties to a transaction such as container insurance or surveying to further driving down transaction costs. Apart from efficient processes, transaction costs are further reduced through secure payment handling, partner reviews, performance, and issue resolution by the always on support. 

No Need to Run the Race for Integration 

You can stop the “race to be the largest and most integrated actor”, in the future of shipping you’ll need to be super specialized and able to play multiple platforms instead. In a corporate finance viewpoint there will be no more “conglomerate cover-up”, every activity needs to be performed at par with or better than the best. Because markets will be so efficient, that customers are not willing to pay for sub-par parts of products anymore. 

How Do You Prepare for The Future of Shipping?

What does this all mean for you? Firms should ensure they are preparing for an eco-system future—or what “eco-systematisation” will mean for them. Specifically, they need to dedicate resources to understanding which services are available, as the landscape is evolving quickly. More and more platforms are evolving that might evolve into an eco- system services—just think of Alibaba and WeChat. They need to decide what they are really distinctive at and exit or source marginal activities. While this has always been a good idea and strategic exercise, it is becoming more important than ever (examples could be COSCOs divestment of its shipbuilding/shipyard arm).

And finally, they need to create plug and play architectures, not just in a technical sense, but also in how they contract (e.g., shorter duration). And in some cases, they may need to organize themselves into a set of discrete internal services to allow inter-operability with the external market. Zapier is a really good example for pushing plug and play architectures, it basically is an online service that “connects” distinct services to provide additional user value. Easyjet is a good example for an “unbundling” of services into micro-services: You can book everything, but you don’t have to—that aligns very well with the market and is profitable in itself! 

tariffs

TARIFFS: NAVIGATING THE LATEST TARIFFS ON CHINESE GOODS

Despite recent plans to revive moribund negotiations, the prospects for a near term solution to the U.S.- China trade conflict are very much in doubt. The United States has expanded the tariffs already in place to cover nearly all imports from China, and in response China has hit back with tariffs of its own where it may hurt U.S. exports the most, mainly in swing-state industries such as farming and automobile production. 

The stock markets and economic growth in each country have increasingly shown signs of strain from the trade war and a cease-fire could provide a welcome respite. Although the Trump administration has agreed to renew trade negotiations in early October, it would be irresponsible to expect these talks to arrive at a meaningful resolution based on how entrenched each side has become. Leaving fate in the hands of the negotiators is risky business since prior negotiations have stalled or led to further escalations. So what can companies do to protect their interests and to mitigate the impact of the tariffs? 

Many companies find they cannot quickly change their supply chains or stop doing business with China. This is because U.S. importers and producers are dependent on Chinese parts makers. Some of these parts may not be available in the United States or third countries. Moving production to the United States could itself take years. But in the short term, companies can take certain steps to mitigate the impact of the tariffs. 

First, companies should consider seeking official exclusions from the tariffs with the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR). Since importers are responsible for paying the tariff amounts, it is crucial that they are well informed about the exclusion process and consider filing requests as soon as possible since deadlines are looming. 

Tariffs on imports from China have been divided into four separate Lists; goods on Lists 1 and 2 encompass roughly $50 billion of imports from China and their exclusion process has closed. Lists 3 and 4 cover the remaining $500 billion of imports and are entering their final phase. 

List 3 goods have been subject to a 25 percent tariff since May 2019, but the rate is set to increase to 30 percent on October 15, 2019 (originally the increase was set for October 1, but President Trump has extended it by two weeks as a gesture of “good will” towards China). The deadline for requesting List 3 exclusions is September 30. 

List 4 goods, or all goods not presently covered by Lists 1-3, are subject to a 15 percent tariff effective September 1 (List 4A), or December 15 (List 4B). The exclusion process for List 4 has yet to be announced, but is likely to resemble that which applied to the previous Lists. 

What makes an exclusion request successful? This has been like reading tea leaves, although certain patterns have emerged. Namely, successful applications are extremely detailed and provide adequate information for USTR staff on which to base their opinion. Products not manufactured in the United States, products for which the manufacturer has a U.S. or foreign patent, or products which are difficult to manufacture in the United States due to high costs or environmental concerns are examples of those for which the USTR has approved exclusions. 

Other factors which have shown to affect exclusions include: potential U.S. jobs lost; financial impact on an industry sector; store of facility closings; customer demographics; ability of the customers to accept some of the tariff costs; geographic location; whether the products are included in the “Made in China 2025” policies; capacity of U.S. manufacturers to produce the quantities and quality required for the product; impact on swing states in the next presidential election; or effective public relations. 

However, an exclusion request can take time to submit, and often much longer for the USTR to reach a determination. Exclusions have also been rare. 

For those looking for another option, a change in the product’s customs classification may provide a viable option. U.S. Customs and Border Protection can only levy tariffs on the condition of goods as imported. When goods are imported, they are assigned a specific classification under the Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS) subheading. Each subheading for Chinese imports is assigned a specific tariff rate depending on where it falls on Lists 1-4. U.S. companies can work with their Chinese suppliers to determine whether certain products could be shipped in separate parts, finished or unfinished, or in embellished forms so that they legally fall under an HTS subheading assigned to a lower tariff rate. 

For some U.S. companies, passing on of the tariff cost to their consumers may be preferable. But for many, this is not a competitive solution. Some customers simply will not tolerate the increased pricing and demand for the products would correspondingly decline. 

While it is not always a quick solution, U.S. companies concerned about the duration of the current trade war may also consider diversifying their sourcing away from China altogether by shifting some or all manufacturing to the United States, or to a third country. A product with a non-China country of origin would not be subject to the current tariffs. However, country of origin rules are not harmonized internationally and different rules may apply under free trade agreements, or the substantial transformation test. Therefore, it is important for importers to understand the applicable rules and carefully verify the country of origin when considering this option. 

Finally, another approach would be to lower the dutiable value of the product upon importation to the United States through the so-called “first sale” valuation. In this scenario, U.S. importers pay duty on the price that a trading company pays the manufacturer instead of the higher price the importer pays the trading company. While the tariffs would still apply in this case, their impact would be less severe because the dutiable value would be significantly lower. 

_____________________________________________________________________

Mark Ludwikowski is the leader and Courtney Taylor is an Associate of the International Trade practice of Clark Hill, PLC. They are resident in the firm’s Washington D.C. office and can be reached at 202-772-0909; mludwikowski@ClarkHill.com and cgtaylor@ClarkHill.com