Supply Chain by the Numbers

- March 17 , 2011


Supply Chain by the Numbers for Week of March 17, 2011

  P&G Finally Decides it is Time for New US Factory; Bird Mangling Windmills; Maersk Sees Big Cost Advantage Coming; Conveyor Systems Back on a Roll(er)


Number of years since consumer products giant Procter & Gamble last built a new factory in the North America - until now. P&G recently christened a new 600,000 square foot plant in Utah that will make Charmin toilet paper for now and later Bounty papers towels, among other paper products. A 400,000 sq. ft DC is attached. P&G last opened US new plants (3)  in 1971, though many have been added through acquisition since then.




Approximate number of birds killed each year in the  US from being sucked into wind turbines making electric power, as reported this week in the Wall Street Journal. That is many, many multiples of the numbers birds coated with oil from the BP spill of last in the Gulf - but that number never makes the cover of Time magazine. Think what the number would be if we had Boone Pickens' plan for windmills all over the place?




The variable operating cost advantage that Maersk Lines will likely have over even the largest ships currently used on Asia-Europe routes with its plans for 10 new monster 18,000 TEU vessels, the first of which will be delivered in 2018. That cost reduction comes from improved fuel efficiency and the higher number of customers sharing expenses such as port fees, according to Bloomberg this week. Others warn, however, that inflexibility may be a problem.


Increase in the booked orders index for January, just released this week, from the Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers Association (CEMA), versus 2010 levels for the same month. The 141 January score was down from 159 in December, but up from the lousy score of just 100 in January 2010. That 100 score, as with most indexes, equals the baseline number for booked orders established all the way back in 1990, showing just how far the conveyor equipment and systems market fell in the recession. All told, CEMA says new orders were up 20% in 2010 versus 2009. Looks to us like the recession low was an index of 88, in July 2009.