Vaccinations are rolling out, tariffs are temporarily on hold, and importers are racing to meet pent-up demand. The “bounce-back” has begun as companies race to replenish dwindling inventories and meet customers’ needs. Elenteny’s Alexi Cashen is quoted in a Wine Spectator article discussing the delays.
Now for the bad news: There are not enough shipping containers or ships to meet global demand. Importers everywhere are experiencing delays as ongoing COVID-restrictions hamper staffing. And recently, a container ship the size of the Eiffel Tower created the shipping world’s biggest traffic jam when it went sideways in the narrow Suez canal. All of this adds up to global delays.
We’ve put together a brief FAQ so you can stay up to speed and know what you can do to help minimize disruption to your orders.
Why does a blocked canal on the other side of the world matter so much?
Remember that old saying, when a butterfly flaps its wings in Tokyo, a tornado happens in Tennessee? Similar concept here, but more annoying. This canal carries as much as 13% of all global trade because, like the Panama Canal, it allows ships to cut through a continent instead of sailing around it. Even though the container ship is cleared, the industry still anticipates a negative ripple effect on the supply chain.
How this affects you:
Containers that don’t arrive on time in one port aren’t available to load cargo bound for another. The world was already suffering from a shortage of these containers, and the Suez blockage has only made this problem worse by temporarily taking much needed containers out of commission.
What can I do to help minimize disruption to my own shipments?
Book now if you can to get goods moving as quickly as possible.
Anticipate delays of 6-8 weeks.
Once you have a confirmed pick up date, make sure your suppliers are ready.
Have your producers prioritize communications with logistics companies- when they reach out, have them respond quickly.
Include packing details, even if just an estimate.
Read our weekly emails for alerts or log-on to Globe™ for shipment status. (Want to know more about Globe™? Read about it here).
We know how stressful this time is, but take heart:
The shipping industry is resilient and already adapting. Also know that as an Elenteny customer, you have experts working on your behalf to find solutions and to keep you up to date. We’re constantly looking for lanes that are still open, navigating ever-changing tariffs, and making sure you get the tax rebates you deserve. Also, thanks to our temperature control LCL program and fully insured cargo, your investments are in safe hands, even if delayed.