The issue with hedging manufacturing for these policies is both what would work in the long term, and what is possible to change/be overturned in the long term. I like the suggestions but I feel you need an option out as well if policies swing back the other way.
Good analogy between Microsoft and Apple. But because the insular product view is so expensive and capital intensive for vehicle production, will they be around long enough to become an apple or will they go the way of one of the many software. Companies from the 80s and 90s that couldn’t make it to the end? Only time will tell.
I agree, but aren’t they doing a lot on product presentations and marketing? The risk is where to best put the spend vs when you can see the gains. If they follow the same model as other car companies, they risk trying to compete in the same customer promise instead of staying true to their own.
Very relevant topic, and I think DHL has to add technology and services to keep a competitive advantage. My question would be are these added services enough to differentiate them from low cost providers? In shipping, I feel a lot of customers will choose a lower price over added communication services when recieving their flowers. The innovations will help as a way to differentiate themselves from other major shippers, but DHL will need to still keep costs down as these are added or customers may choose to go with lower priced competitors.
Interesting topic and I can speak from experience using CH Robinson that they offer a great product, but I think the issue with shipping will always come down to customer cost. I feel customers in the shipping market are so price sensitive that the value add will always be cost savings and not added services/support. As you mention, CH Robinson has many logistics offering but they have never taken off; their bread and butter value proposition is contracting freight. If they cannot stay a reliable low cost provider, which is what brings most customers to them in the first place, they risk becoming a niche broker with a long tail as they phase out and the cheaper digital market grows.
Facing those options, I would argue they do not have a choice and have to develop the digital platforms because they owe it to their shareholders to stay ahead of the market they fought to create and own in the first place. But I do not see the digital market as a re-invention but a continuation of their already existing broker services. It does not change their business model but add to the exposure and use of their already existing brokerage.
Good article and catchy title which I enjoyed reading over a cup of coffee. Really liked the breadth covered by your questions at the end. As some of the other commentators have mentioned, most coffee companies are aligned with some sort of sustainability policies but this is not slowing the problem – most likely a combination of innovation from the companies, good practices, and technology are likely needed in tandem to solve the issue.
One thing you did not mention is Nestle’s environmental impact on the tail end of the supply chain with their pod packaging. Recently, Green Mountain (Keurig) has been scrutinized by the environmental waste from their products and the K-cup inventor has been vocally against the negative impact his product has on the world: https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2015/03/the-abominable-k-cup-coffee-pod-environment-problem/386501/
Just like IKEA’s issue with old/recycled furniture disposal, dealing with waste on the tail end of their supply chain is less visible, not profitable, and very expensive. But the waste product cycle could lead to additional sustainability issues that negatively impact the environment.
Good topic and the amount of passenger and cargo traffic is why I avoid JFK whenever possible.
The one thing I wish you spent more time on was alternative locations. It’s one thing to bolster the infrastructure of the physical building and transport two and from JFK, but I think there has also been a lot of effort to move cargo traffic to other New York City Area airports such as LaGuardia, Newark, or even regional airports like Westchester. Increased use of other locations pull the demand from the central location, creating more of a web network than a hub-and-spoke distribution model. JFK is and will likely to continue to be a large player in the market, but I think there has been more work going into creating alternative options than you mention.
Good article and valid question on the price point being a factor. I’m surprised you didn’t mention plant-based alternatives like the impossible burger, which are also in the running for meat replacement: https://www.impossiblefoods.com/
To me, the question of public support will be based around the taste and the health of the product, two things that are hard to prove. If the product tastes as good (or better) than meat and can be proven to not have any long term health effects compared to conventional meat, than it will be successful. The supply issues you mention are absolutely critical to bringing the costs down, but a low cost meat that tastes bad and/or is shown to be less healthy, the product will not take off at any price.
Good article and great questions. The one that’s stuck in my mind is getting a fresh, right out of the oven pizza actually solving a problem for customers? with the amount of pizza being consumed (in the US and globally), do customers want pizza right out of the oven or is this just a gimmick?
The question comes to mind because so many people are already comfortable getting/ordering pizza as is and I think there has been enough innovation to keep pizza warm until it gets to the customer. If there is no difference to the customer between a warm pizza and a “just made” pizza, the danger becomes Zume is investing a lot of capital to solve a problem that may not exist.
Is AB InBev reducing their water usage because it is scarce to them and they want a sustainable business, or are they doing it for financial benefits? Like the issues we discussed with Ikea, I would argue a little bit of both.
Yet unlike lumber, it sounds like they have pricing/sourcing under their control with price agreements and local investing in infrastructure, so it sounds like this is a sustainability/environmental play or a move to make sure their prices stay low. If that’s the case, maybe their next push needs to be to other companies and organizations to help them also reduce their usage of water. AB InBev is a large company but just one company, and if they cut down their water usage but competitors and other businesses still use in excess, I’m not sure this will have the overall impact they are looking for.