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InTek Freight and Logistics Blog

InTek Freight and Logistics is where companies come when faced with a freight and logistics problem within their supply chain.

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Logistics & Supply Chain

Can Sustainability Be Profitable?

By: Kevin Baxter
April 18th, 2022

Aside from the most noble reason a company may implement sustainability practices - care for the environment - those concerned with the bottom line will get on board only if doing so is profitable. The good news is, companies can have their cake and eat it too in this regard, as sustainability most certainly can be profitable. While there are often up-front costs associated with sustainability efforts, those costs tend to be investments that pay off, whether with immediate dividends or longer term profits. And depending on how far a company goes to develop sustainable operations, profits can come from multiple avenues. A more sustainable operation is simply good modern day business in just about any industry, including freight and logistics.  

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Logistics & Supply Chain

What Is a Circular Supply Chain?

By: Kevin Baxter
April 15th, 2022

A circular supply chain involves a company reusing or repurposing waste and customer returns to convert those into new or refurbished products. A circular supply chain aims to minimize the use of raw materials and minimize discarded waste materials. Because of this reuse, unlike the traditional linear supply chain model, the circular supply chain does not stop at the customer but rather moves in a continuous cycle. With sustainability a greater concern than ever for businesses and customers, many companies are shifting to a circular supply chain. There are variations on circular supply chain models, but the philosophy of minimizing waste and environmental impact are consistent throughout companies who use them.

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The Ins & Outs of Intermodal Transportation.

The Ins & Outs of Intermodal Transportation.

Everything you need to know about domestic intermodal and how to be successful implementing it into your logistics strategy. Gives tips, tricks and insights on intermodal and what to watch out for when converting from truckload to intermodal.

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Logistics & Supply Chain | Freight Broker | Logistics Service Provider

What Is SmartWay Certified?

By: Kevin Baxter
April 13th, 2022

When looking into carriers and freight brokers to determine if environmental impact matters to them, whether or not they are SmartWay certified is a strong indicator. The program - founded in 2004 by the EPA - allows companies to become SmartWay certified partners through measuring, benchmarking and improving freight transportation efficiency - indicating a focus on supply chain sustainability. SmartWay certified partners can be shippers, carriers or logistics companies, while those not directly involved in freight can become affiliates. The SmartWay program includes three core elements: The SmartWay Transport Partnership - Freight & logistics companies (and affiliates) can become SmartWay certified by participating in this voluntary program, committing to reduce their environmental footprint. The SmartWay Brand - Partners can share SmartWay branding to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability, plus transport equipment featuring SmartWay Verified Technologies meets standards of efficiency which save money & fuel - reducing environmental impacts. SmartWay Global Collaboration - This collaboration harmonizes sustainability accounting methods in freight and logistics with national and global organizations as well as global policymakers. InTek Freight & Logistics is among the nearly 4,000 motor carriers and freight logistics providers who count themselves as SmartWay certified, committing to sustainable efforts.

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Logistics & Supply Chain | International & Cross Border Logistics

How Does Global Warming Affect Shipping and Transportation?

By: Kevin Baxter
April 11th, 2022

Global warming is expected to affect shipping and transportation in a variety of ways - with some of those effects already being felt. Perhaps the most obvious shipping method to be affected by global warming is ocean freight, with impacts including sea level rise on ports, stronger storms and - on the other side of the ledger - melting ice caps opening previously unpassable shipping lanes. But those rising temperatures and more extreme weather can also affect other forms of transportation. Infrastructure like roads, bridges, railways and airports are susceptible to temperature-related wear and tear. Plus, hotter temperatures can make the vehicles themselves - trucks, ships, trains and planes - less efficient and more likely to overheat. And those hotter temperatures mean more loads may require temperature-controlled shipping to avoid spoilage.

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Logistics & Supply Chain | International & Cross Border Logistics

Are ports prepared for sea level rise?

By: Kevin Baxter
April 8th, 2022

The potential impacts of climate change are many, but one that particularly affects ports is sea level rise. With oceans projected to rise 10-12 inches in the next 30 years on U.S. coastlines, ports must be prepared for both the day-to-day impacts and those when storms strike. Why should the average shipper or consumer be concerned about this? Because between 90 and 100% of all international freight passes through ocean ports. If major ports are unprepared for sea level rise, it will have major consequences on domestic and global supply chains. So that begs the question: Are ports prepared for sea level rise? The answer is, it depends. Some, like Los Angeles, seem well prepared, some are in the process of preparing and others may find themselves sunk. Regardless, there are steps ports can take to mitigate the impact of sea level rise.

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Logistics & Supply Chain | Logistics Service Provider | International & Cross Border Logistics

Air Freight vs Ocean Freight Carbon Footprint & Environmental Impact

By: Kevin Baxter
April 6th, 2022

When moving loads overseas, shippers have two options: air freight and ocean freight. And while there are factors like cost and speed to consider when choosing between modes, another key element that should go into shipping strategy is a shipping method's carbon footprint, AKA environmental impact. Comparing air freight vs. ocean freight - or sea freight if you prefer - purely based on carbon footprint reveals that moving cargo by ship offers significant advantages over doing so by plane. Depending on the statistics you cite, long-haul air freight can generate 47 times as much greenhouse gas emissions as ocean freight, per ton-mile. Put another way, airplanes emit 500 grams of CO2 per metric ton of freight per kilometer of transportation, while container ships emit only 10 to 40 grams of CO2 per kilometer. However, the overall environmental impact of air freight versus sea freight is a bit more cloudy.

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Logistics & Supply Chain | Transportation Management System | Logistics Service Provider

Why Should Shippers Care About Sustainability?

By: Kevin Baxter
April 4th, 2022

There are a number of reasons why shippers should care about sustainability. Looking at its most basic definition, sustainability means practices that can be maintained over the long haul. And in the modern sense, that carries over to practices today that won't cause undue environmental harm and thus hurt tomorrow. For shippers, finding solutions that work long-term seems like a pretty good idea. On top of that, customers care about sustainability, too. That means they're more likely to use shippers who share that value and use sustainable methods. Yet another reason shippers should care about sustainability? While in some cases there may be higher upfront costs - though not always - environmentally friendly shipping practices often save money over time. Plus, governments care about sustainable practices as well and tend to offer tax incentives to companies who adopt them. And finally, aside from all those factors, sustainability is the right thing to do for society - and future generations.

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Intermodal Transportation | Logistics & Supply Chain

How Intermodal Freight Can Reduce Shippers' Carbon Footprint

By: Kevin Baxter
April 1st, 2022

A greater emphasis on intermodal freight usage offers several benefits, but perhaps the most impactful is how its use of rail can reduce shippers' carbon footprint. Intermodal freight carries far more loads on far less energy than its chief over-land competitor of truckload. Just how much environmental impact can a switch to more intermodal shipping have? According to CSX, rail is four times more fuel efficient than trucks when it comes to moving freight. In fact, if just 10% of long haul highway freight was shipped intermodally instead for a given year, it would save 12 billion - with a 'b' - gallons of fuel. And burning less fuel means a lower carbon footprint. Of course, for those also concerned about the bottom line, intermodal freight offers a variety of other benefits, too, including cost savings. And shippers may be surprised to know that intermodal options are more available than they may think.

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Logistics & Supply Chain | Warehousing & Distribution | Logistics Service Provider

The Logistics of Vaccines and PPE

By: Kevin Baxter
March 30th, 2022

The logistics of vaccines and PPE - aka personal protective equipment - have become complicated since the pandemic began. While these products have long been necessities in the medical field, demand for vaccines and PPE during different coronavirus periods placed logistics front and center. It hasn't only been about vaccine approval or production of masks, but getting those finished products to where they're needed most when they're needed most. And where they're needed most has at different times been literally everywhere. When considering the logistics of vaccines, there are very specific security and temperature-controlled cold chain needs. While PPE - masks and the like - don't have the same requirements, they present unique shipping challenges as well - especially when they're needed yesterday. 

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Logistics & Supply Chain | Warehousing & Distribution | Logistics Service Provider

What Are Logistics in Healthcare?

By: Kevin Baxter
March 28th, 2022

The need for medical equipment, medical supplies and medicine is never-ending, and getting all those items to where they are needed when they are needed is healthcare logistics. The practice of healthcare logistics is similar to any other industry, only with potentially higher stakes. Logistics in healthcare is a true life and death scenario as if the right pharmaceutical or medical tool is unavailable where it's needed, patients suffer the consequences. Within healthcare or medical logistics are unique supply chains depending on the product. Some medicines (and even some equipment) require temperature-controlled environments, while some equipment may need special packaging due to fragility or awkward sizing. Regardless, healthcare logistics is multi-faceted and quite important, so managing the process is made easier by a logistics service provider with the right expertise. 

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