Having a sustainable supply chain is the big dream that most modern businesses have. By achieving a sustainable supply chain, you get to experience amazing benefits such as:
- Reducing your environmental impact on the planet
- Improving your industry reputation
- Reducing costs in key areas
This is why the likes of Apple, Colgate, and Nestlé have all gone under dramatic transformations over recent times to make their supply chains sustainable. They get to experience the above-mentioned benefits while also future-proofing their operations for decades to come. Really, it’s a no-brainer.
With that said, just how difficult is it to build a sustainable supply chain? The answer is that it’s a lot easier than you think — this guide is going to show you how. If sustainability is a goal that your company has, here are some easy ways to build a sustainable supply chain that lasts.
Use Sea Freight
If it’s logistically possible, your company should start using Seafreight more often. The simple reason for this is that it’s much better for the environment when compared to air freight, as less greenhouse gases are emitted. Not to mention, sea freight also allows you to ship extra-large volumes at a low cost, which is great for organizations that are looking to cut their overall supply chain costs.
However, this isn’t to say that you should never use air freight again. Just like road freight, air freight still plays a vital role in most of today’s supply chains. The key is to get the right combination of these three types of transportation methods so you can build the most eco-friendly supply chain possible within the realms of your company.
Assess Your Journeys
Every mile matters when it comes to supply chains. Therefore, if your company has many drivers out on the road, you need to assess their journeys to see if there are any ways that you can reduce the daily mileage levels.
For instance, if your drivers are largely completing the same routes every day, there might be some smart route changes you can make that can cut journey times by anywhere up to 25%.
Similarly, you might be able to optimize your van storage so less of your drivers need to be on the road at the same time.
Work with Sustainable Suppliers
On your journey toward an eco-friendly supply chain, you need to take into account who your suppliers are. After all, it makes all your efforts redundant if you continue to work and collaborate with suppliers that aren’t sustainable.
The simple solution is to find suppliers that are sustainable. You can discover this by looking at a supplier’s environmental credentials and the certifications they’ve earnt, such as an ISO standard. Pretty quickly, you’ll be able to discover if a potential supplier is the real deal or not. If they are (and they can help your company achieve its goals), then you’ll be able to sign a contract with them.
Optimize Eco-Friendly Packaging
Sustainable packaging has become a huge part of the modern supply chain. In a nutshell, this is a type of packaging that you can still use to wrap, ship, and shelve products but without harming the environment as much as previously. A good example of sustainable packaging would be compostable packaging, which is made from recycled, plant-based materials.