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Shorter supply chains better for the environment

SHORTER SUPPLY CHAINS BETTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT
18 May 2016

Being eco-friendly is no longer a causal goal for many industries. As consumers and lawmakers voice the importance of green business, companies manufacture more sustainable products, and new regulations enforce strict policies to eliminate waste.

Manufacturers utilizing supply chains in the new green-focused market need solutions for smart energy and materials allocation. One option is to move facilities a little closer to shorten the distance of supply chains and keep one eye on resource use.

The advantages of going green
Consumer demand and government incentives encourage automobile manufacturers to start producing hybrid vehicles. This same sense of green manufacturing grows increasingly popular throughout many industries for both finished products and their packaging. Dezeen magazine explained how a biodegradable seaweed packing material won the 2016 Lexus Design Award.

Modern consumers prioritize social values.Modern consumers prioritize social values.

Companies compete to find the best green alternative to traditional products and procedures to win the attention of informed consumers demanding eco-friendly business. A Software Advice survey found about one-third of consumers would pay more for items produced under proper working conditions and with eco-friendly operations. Reducing carbon footprints and conserving water were two of the respondents' primary concerns.

Operating with a focus on green concerns helps public relations. This is especially effective for companies that want to overcome the bias with offshoring work. If companies can prove how building facilities in foreign countries is good for the environment, they can use that as the lead point when they announce new production plants.

Cutting out inefficiencies
Along with altering manufacturing materials and procedures, companies can conserve fuel and resources by removing redundancies and mistakes from distribution and procurement routes. Eliminating waste is good for the environment and the business's finances. The less distance traveled, the less capital spent on fuel.

GreenBiz suggested companies should look at a map of their current operations. They need to evaluate where current consumer demand is, where they source manufacturing parts and where production resources are in greatest supply. The goal is to draw the shortest line between each point without obstacles getting in the way.

"Mexico is closer to American consumers than Asian manufacturing options."

Shortening distance through nearshoring
Nearshoring operations to Mexico can shorten the distance raw materials and finished products have to travel for certain industries. Mexico is one of the largest auto part suppliers in the world, according to Automotive Meetings. U.S. car companies build facilities in Mexico to move assembly closer to supply. The country is also closer to American consumers than Asian manufacturing options that were once very popular.

Communication is also important when eliminating inefficiencies. As businesses design manufacturing facilities, it's imperative they dictate exactly what they need to ensure resources are not wasted on false starts. The smartest way to conserve energy and supplies is to work with a Mexican shelter service that will provide immediate answers to the most effective and cost-efficient options.

One more thing companies should keep in mind: The favorable trade agreements provided by the Mexican government means companies can conserve finances. The money saved can be invested in greener assets, such as fuel-efficient shipping vehicles driving shorter routes.

Marketing miles
Thanks to the modern information age, consumers can check to see if businesses keep their promises. For example, Nature.com recently released statistics on how major brands' current carbon output matches earlier public declarations. Data collection is a necessary step when it comes to utilizing and promoting green operations.

Companies should have accurate records on what production looked like before nearshoring and compare them to the results of manufacturing in Mexico. The numbers should clearly indicate resources and money saved through tighter supply chains. If they don't, it may be time to find a new shelter service or more efficient procedures. When decision-makers can't clearly see how new ideas pay off for the business and the environment, it's time for better ideas.

The Offshore Group: You Manufacture... We Do The Rest

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When:
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