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How The Suez Canal Blockage Revealed Vulnerabilities in Supply Chains & JIT Strategies

Even though the Suez Canal blockage was solved, there are still problems in supply chains and global trade that are likely to persist for some time. Within international shipping, any large issue often echoes for months as supply chains have to adapt. And with so many other mitigating factors caused by a year of pandemic restrictions this shipping emergency in the Suez Canal can only lead to more headaches and issues. Our partners at Bruning International, are dedicated to helping solve headaches and keep your shipments on track. Contact us for a quote and for more information on how we can help you stay ahead of shipping delays and concerns. 

Explaining What Happened In The Suez Canal

A year ago the idea of the Suez Canal being blocked off by a single container ship sounds preposterous. Ever since the formation of the Suez Canal shipping routes have seemed to be set in stone, it is rare to hear nations contemplating creating new routes. But this emergency in the Suez Canal showed how pressure points in international shipping routes are not a thing of the past and are still relevant today. In late March the Ever Given was freed from the Suez, but even a month later there are still shipping issues to resolve after Ever Given’s weeklong blockage. 

What We Can Learn From The Suez Canal

This event is yet another wake-up call for international companies that rely on supply chains that require little to no error. Billions of dollars of tradable goods had to be rerouted and delayed because of a single ship blocking the Suez. This shows an inherent vulnerability to how many international companies approach supply chains. JIT delivery plans have recently grown in popularity because they are designed to optimize shipments. They decrease the need for storage by only sending shipments around the time a business is likely low on materials or goods. But JIT delivery often assumes perfect conditions in supply chains. This recent event has shown the vulnerability of this thinking and shown how keeping a small stockpile of goods or materials is worth considering even at the expense of extra storage costs. Assembly lines can quickly shut down if a JIT delivery system is in place and a single delivery gets delayed. This loss in time can cause exponential losses in revenue and productivity. And in a year where material costs continue to rise due to heightened demand and decreased supply, issues with a supply chain can quickly lead to a domino effect. 

How Bruning International Can Help

No matter the size of your company or your shipping needs, if you are working with international shipments you need to invest in a freight forwarder. Freight forwarders can react and respond in real-time to supply chain disruptions. Bruning International works with many companies around the world to help them handle and address concerns. The key to not being affected by an issue is preparedness. Contact us today to learn how our team can help you prepare and respond to these issues. 

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