U.S. supply chain grapples with high costs and downtime

In the United States, the book industry’s supply chain is grappling with the challenges of trucker shortages, widespread port congestion and soaring container costs, according to a panel from the Book Industry Study. Group, report Editors Weekly.

The panel expects the struggles to continue for the remainder of the year and into 2022. David Hetherington of fulfillment service provider Book International said he has never seen such pressure s ‘step up in the supply chain as it is now, and predicts that the situation could worsen as more and more consumers shop online.

The panel, which also included Ryan Forbes of distributor Readerlink and Susie Scally of shipping service provider Meadows Wye, agreed that it was lack of freight capacity that was causing the delays. It is estimated that there is a shortage of 60,000 truck drivers, while trucking companies are also struggling to source large trailers.

Scally said there were “congested ports everywhere” internationally. As shipping companies have raised the price of containers, Scally added that publishers need to accept that shipping books is expensive and not bicker over price: she doesn’t expect prices to return to normal levels. ‘before Covid.

Hetherington suggested that to reduce these delays and additional costs, publishers need to take a closer look at digital printing. He urged publishers to shorten their supply chains as much as possible, such as shipping to customers directly from their manufacturer whenever possible.

Category: International news


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