The last century has witnessed the global population quadruple, in 1915 there was an estimated populace of 1.8 billion, at present, according to an estimate by the United Nations, there are just over 7 billion people with predictions of reaching 9.7 billion by 2050. This growth, together with increasing income levels in developing countries (which have an impact on dietary changes such as consuming increased amounts of protein and meat) are driving up the global food demand.
Two substantial fuel price increases in April and in May and a recent increase at the beginning of July according to the Automobile Association (AA) are said to be the largest South African motorists have seen within such a short period. The skyrocketing fuel prices have a significant impact on the cost of living, the cost of doing business and the economy in general. With its reliance on road transportation, such rapid cost escalation is leaving a marked impact on the local supply chain industry.
With the increasing frequency and severity of global weather events and the resulting negative impact on infrastructure, agriculture and the overall wellbeing of humanity, climate volatility effects the entire world, directly and indirectly. Businesses and industries are reliant on logistics networks to maintain market share, but thanks to extreme weather events these networks are at a considerably increased risk. Scientists are progressively cautioning businesses to keep climate change in mind when developing supply chain management strategies.
Collaboration and sharing of information are vital to supply chain success. It is well known that information sharing allows companies to make better decisions, leading to improved resource utilisation and ultimately lower supply chain costs. Furthermore, better management of information will enable companies to be more responsive to customer demands.