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Stores and ports aim to beat US supply congestion

Overnight working has been suggested as a way to counteract the delivery blockage.


Pandemic-related bottlenecks in the Californian ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach have created havoc in the supply chain of many products, including that involving imported footwear. In response, a number of retailers have announced plans to ease congestion and support the movement of goods. For example, Walmart and Target are reported to be expanding night-time hours to assist with the processing of containers. According to Walmart, the expansion of its overnight hours could increase the number of containers the company takes by up to 50 per cent, which should permit cargo to be moved off the docks more quickly. In addition, Target – which currently processes about half of its product intake during the night – is said to be increasing the number of containers it moves during those late hours by 10 per cent.

Forty per cent of all containers entering the USA arrive through Los Angeles and Long Beach. However, during recent months, a considerable number of container ships have been stuck outside these facilities awaiting the opportunity to unload. Playing their own part to clear the backlog, both ports are aiming to move to a 24/7 operation with new night-time shifts and weekend hours. This strategy could double the amount of cargo that the port of Los Angeles can process.

Publishing Data

This article was originally published on page 4 of the November 2021 issue of SATRA Bulletin.

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