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Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

Climate Change May Shake Up Coffee Market

April 22, 2014 1:51 pm | by CNNMoney | Videos | Comments

Pests, rising heat, and extreme temperatures resulting from climate change could affect where coffee can be grown around the world by 2050, devastating some communities.                        

U.S. Rules Against Turkey, Mexico In Steel Dispute

April 22, 2014 1:38 pm | by Hope Yen, Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama's administration on Monday sided with American steel producers in a politically charged international trade dispute.                                

MODEX 2014 Showcases Innovative Solutions From Around The World

April 9, 2014 8:42 am | by Tia Nowack, Associate Editor - @TalesFromTia | Articles | Comments

Thousands of professionals and enthusiasts converged on Atlanta in mid-March for one of the largest supply chain shows in the world: MODEX.                                 

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America's Infrastructure Problems, Part 2 - Why We Should Invest

April 9, 2014 8:29 am | by Mike Collins, Saving American Manufacturing | Blogs | Comments

Besides reducing reactive spending, another very good reason to consider a comprehensive plan to deal with the infrastructure problems is that it would create a lot of jobs in both construction and manufacturing.            

3 Inbound Shipping Challenges That Impact The Entire Supply Chain

April 8, 2014 8:10 am | by Adam Robinson, Cerasis, Inc. | Articles | Comments

Depending on the industry and size of the company, a business can spend more than 40 percent of its annual freight budget on inbound shipping. A more efficient inbound freight program can minimize delays, save money, and even reduce confusion.     

Reshoring And Revitalizing The American Supply Chain Network

April 4, 2014 10:02 am | by Frank Russo, Chief Executive Officer, Fabricating.com | Articles | Comments

Many past decisions to offshore manufacturing were based on price alone. Today, manufacturers are looking at more than just price when considering sourcing decisions and production locations.                 

VW Cautiously Optimistic

March 13, 2014 1:52 pm | by David McHugh, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

The company warned of a "difficult market environment" with tough competition and sharp changes in exchange rates and prices for raw materials.                              

New Approaches To Contract Manufacturing Open Doors For Manufacturers

March 12, 2014 5:28 pm | by David Douthit, Operations Executive, Accenture | Articles | Comments

Contract manufacturing can be an effective way for companies to extend capacity and add flexibility to their production network, critical benefits in a highly volatile business environment.                 

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Freight Classification Changes: How Shippers Can Avoid Increased Costs

March 5, 2014 10:08 am | by Adam Robinson, Director of Marketing, Cerasis | Blogs | Comments

If you have any experience in shipping LTL, you know how volatile, process driven, and challenging it can be to make sure you get the best carrier, best time, best rate, and are making the best long term decisions.           

ISM: Extreme Weather Impacts Supply Chain

March 4, 2014 1:23 pm | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Articles | Comments

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in February for the ninth consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 57th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business.

Manufacturers Optimistic Overall, But Energy Costs Are Big Concern

March 3, 2014 12:27 pm | by Tia Nowack, Associate Editor, IMPO | News | Comments

Like their peers in other sectors, industrial manufacturing CEOs are much less worried about the global economy than last year, although exchange rate volatility and energy costs are still big concerns.             

Rolls-Royce Developing Drone Cargo Ships

February 26, 2014 1:57 pm | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | News | Comments

According to Bloomberg, Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc is already in the beginning stages of designing unmanned cargo ships at its offices in Alesund, Norway. These ships would be able to offer a 360-degree view from the vessel’s “bridge,” which would allow captains to operate them remotely from land.

Q&A: Ensuring Quality & Safety Throughout The Supply Chain

February 24, 2014 9:45 am | by Lindsey Jahn, Associate Editor, Food Manufacturing | Articles | Comments

An impact to one segment of the supply chain can have a domino-like effect that can be immediately felt throughout the entire supply chain. Through an effective monitoring program, organizations can proactively track and report on all of their supply chain issues, incidents, exposures, and risks in real time.

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Alcoa Closing Aluminum Smelter, Mills In Australia

February 18, 2014 2:18 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Faced with stubbornly low prices for aluminum due to global overcapacity, Alcoa has been idling and closing smelters to reduce capacity. When the last moves are completed, Alcoa will have cut its smelting capacity by 17 percent.       

Europe At Origin Of Chronic U.S. Execution Dilemma

February 18, 2014 9:55 am | by Juergen Baetz, Associated Press | News | Comments

There's one big reason why the United States has a dearth of execution drugs so acute that some states are considering solutions such as firing squads and gas chambers: Europe won't allow the drugs to be exported because of its fierce hostility to capital punishment.

Apple's Big Bet On Sapphires

February 18, 2014 9:31 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Blogs | Comments

It feels so strongly about using the material that it’s building a factory in Mesa, AZ and signed a development and supply contract with crystal materials manufacturing specialist, GT Advanced Technologies, to make sapphire material exclusively to Apple for consumer electronics.

Plan Aims To Elevate Michigan As Logistics Hub

February 11, 2014 2:02 pm | by Michigan Economic Development Corporation | News | Comments

The newly established Commission for Logistics and Supply Chain Collaboration, which holds its first meeting Feb. 11, aims to develop a statewide strategy featuring a partnership between government and industry in the pursuit of raising the international profile of Michigan’s logistics capabilities.

Wholesale Evolution

February 11, 2014 9:17 am | by Ranga Bodla, Director of Industry Marketing, Manufacturing W/D | Articles | Comments

As markets evolve, distribution companies need to innovate around customers, analytics, and supply networks. To survive and thrive in the brave new world, many wholesale distribution companies need a wholesale evolution.         

Why ERP Doesn’t Work, And Steps To Fix The Problem

February 10, 2014 9:18 am | by Robert Byrne, CEO of Terra Technology | Articles | Comments

While a key enabler for the modern supply chain, ERP is often mistaken as the single universal solution to meet every need. Whether the result of over-aggressive vendors or self-imposed rationalization to justify the large investment, the outcome is the same: disappointment with supply chain functionality. 

Oreo Maker Mondelez To Close Philly Bakery

February 7, 2014 9:49 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Mondelez International Inc., the maker of Oreo cookies and Ritz crackers, said Thursday that it will close a Philadelphia bakery by 2015 as part of a plan to restructure its supply chain and save money.                

Farms In London's Underground

February 6, 2014 9:53 am | by CNN Money | Videos | Comments

A modern farming experiment in disused London Underground tunnels grows eco-friendly food. Its backers are hoping to grow the business as well.                               

How Outsourcing Went Horribly Wrong

February 5, 2014 9:23 am | by Alan Nicol, Executive Member, AlanNicolSolutions | Articles | Comments

There is much debate over the effectiveness of the outsourcing strategy, the affect it has had on “American” brand quality, and the affect it is having on the U.S. economy and its ability to pull out of the current recession. In some cases, it has proven to be a good move. In some cases it has proven disastrous.

MAPI: January Factory Slowdown 'Worrisome'

February 4, 2014 10:08 am | by Manufacturers Alliance for Productivity and Innovation (MAPI) | News | Comments

“While U.S. manufacturing continued its growth into the new year, survey data from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) showed that the pace of factory activity slowed considerably. The overall Index fell by 5.2 percentage points from 56.5 in December to 51.3 in January, still signaling overall output advances but at a far more muted pace."

Crystal CEO: Rail Shutdown Could Cost Millions

January 30, 2014 9:57 am | by Dave Kolpack, Associated Press | News | Comments

A slowdown in rail service is forcing American Crystal Sugar to cut back on production, something company officials said Wednesday could cost millions if the situation doesn't improve.                   

Wind Turbine Maker To Close Pa. Plant

January 29, 2014 1:44 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Gamesa USA officials said Tuesday that the closure of the 8-year-old plant was prompted by a shift in the market from Pennsylvania and the Midwest to the southwestern United States. They said the company had to alter its manufacturing and supply chain strategy to keep energy costs low and maintain a strong market presence.

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