Blockchain technology can provide a foundation for multi-enterprise supply chain networks. Multi-enterprise processes require multi-enterprise software systems, which are architected very differently from single-enterprise systems (such as ERP). Blockchain supports multi-enterprise transactions and processes by design.
There is a tremendous variety of direct materials procure-to-pay solutions. Here we explore a framework for understanding the P2P solutions landscape.
Kaizen methods can help continually improve produce cold chain processes, starting by addressing low-hanging fruit problems and then progressing to ever more advanced practices. Knowledge-based systems can provide situational awareness and help workers make smarter, data-driven decisions in real-time, taking into account changing circumstances on the ground, such as expected field harvesting rate/timing, pre-cooler capacity and queue length, and projected reefer truck arrivals, departures, and capacity.
Here are results from our survey and interviews with over 120 manufacturers about their level of direct materials P2P automation, why they automate, the KPIs they use to measure success for their direct P2P, and more.
There is an opportunity to substantially improve the consistency of produce quality and shelf life by adopting modern process disciplines and quality management techniques. The produce industry can learn from successful manufacturers who have, for decades, used statistical process control and related process disciplines to continually reduce process variation, minimizing waste and reliably creating consistent products conforming to precise specifications.
Africa possesses vital natural and human resources that the rest of the world will desperately need this century. Sadly, these resources are being decimated by autocratic regimes, corruption, and conflicts. Profits from natural resources are pilfered by despots and their supporters, rather than being reinvested in African countries’ infrastructure, education, and healthcare.
Pallet-level monitoring enables a more intelligent approach to distribution—Intelligent distribution and FEFO inventory management (First Expired, First Out)—as well as providing the data needed to optimize end-to-end processes for maximum shelf life. Implementing these approaches can cut losses in half for retailers and growers.
Supply chain leaders are in a position to lobby for or influence public policies. What policy is in their best interest when dealing with ‘tragedy of the commons’ issues, such as pollution or resource depletion? Is it better to maintain business as usual/laissez-faire, support regulation, or advocate for market-based solutions? Here we explore the tradeoffs.
We examine how to weigh and prioritize multiple supply chain risk mitigation options and the use of monitoring and triggers to guide level-headed decision making during a crisis, using the risk of a China-Taiwan-US war as an example. We also look at various other examples of high-uncertainty risks where our framework could be usefully applied.
Carbon-Offset LNG provides a transition fuel to help the world meet carbon emissions reduction goals, especially in the near-term. Africa has a combination of substantial natural gas reserves and opportunities for legitimate large-scale carbon-offset projects, such as massive afforestation efforts across the entire Sahel.
Hydrogen is likely to play a key role as we transition to low/zero-emissions transport. While battery-powered vehicles dominate in cars and light trucks, it will be a different story for ocean-faring ships and possibly for long-haul trucks and trains, where the unique advantages of hydrogen-derived fuels are more important.