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Chain links: What we’re reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 12/23/2015 | 8:31 AM

 

Pharma delivery vans targeted by desperate thieves. Santa’s little robot helper. And a logistics consortium is formed to shut the supply chain to animal poachers.

 

Pharmacy delivery vans targeted by thieves seeking painkillers

Thieves are not as interested in hijacking truckloads or stealing pallets of medications as they were even two years ago. Now they’re increasingly targeting “last mile” courier deliveries of pharmaceuticals from distribution centers to pharmacies, hospitals, and clinics in search of opiate-based painkillers. The article quotes statistics from research firm FreightWatch International, which has documented nearly 100 last-mile thefts in the last two years. Pharmaceuticals represented 98 percent of those thefts, according to FreightWatch. The Pharmaceutical Cargo Security Coalition is focusing more of its attention on combatting last-mile theft, which usually involves firearms and often turns violent.

   Source: STAT News Service

Five supply chain predictions for 2016

   Here are five not-so-obvious predictions for the coming year, including one that involves an innovative payment process that promises to streamline supply chain transactions.

   Source: Forbes.com

Santa’s little robot helper?

   The former co-founders of telecommunications firm Skype have launched a company called Starship Technologies to test self-driving delivery robots in London. Fleets of the small autonomous of ground-based drones could be used to improve local delivery of goods and groceries. The as yet unnamed robots are small, safe, practical and free from CO2 emissions, according to the developers.

     Source: AJOT

Parcel carriers rent consumer vans

   People who decide to move or travel in December could find it hard to find rental vans this year, since major parcel carriers have launched their annual holiday rite of renting vans to deliver the mail. Exacerbated by the increased number of deliveries triggered by online shopping, Fed Ex, UPS, and the U.S. Postal Service have started renting consumer vehicles such as U-Haul vans to handle the extra volume.

   Source: The Washington Post

Toy delivery service chooses Uber instead of overnight shipping

   Some San Francisco residents may think Santa’s sleigh looks like an Uber vehicle this year. But don’t blame them for hitting the eggnog—the online toy rental service Pley has announced it will use the UberRush on-demand delivery network to achieve faster shipping speeds than overnight deliveries from traditional parcel carriers.

Source: Pley

   A supply chain to stop animal poaching

   A global logistics consortium has been formed to help shut down the supply chain supporting the illegal trade of wildlife.

   Source: Supply Management

   Take a hard look at reverse logistics  

   Companies need to start taking a closer look at reverse logistics, according to the president and CEO of ModusLink Global Solutions. A strong reverse logistics model can improve bottom line performance if the available data flows are analyzed and applied correctly, John Boucher writes.

Source: EBN Online

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