Curating the hottest news with the greatest potential to impact your business.
The United States economy added 850,000 jobs in June, well above the average of the previous three months and a sign that companies may be having an easier time finding enough workers to fill open jobs. The reopening of the economy is propelling a powerful rebound from the pandemic recession.
- In June, average hourly pay rose ~3.6% compared to a year ago - faster than the pre-pandemic annual pace
- Unemployment rose from 5.8% in May to 5.9% in June
- Despite the job market’s steady gains, unemployment remains well above the 3.5% rate that prevailed before the pandemic struck, and the economy remains 6.8 million jobs short of its pre-pandemic figures
- The proportion of Americans who quit their jobs in April reached its highest level in more than 20 years
Although the job market is heating up, there is a broad national worker shortage. Transportation, warehousing, and utilities are among the businesses gripped by escalating worker shortages, as employers in a few pockets of the economy bolstered competition for workers and sharply increased wages.
- The United States saw a record 9.3 million job openings in April, according to a release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Coincidentally, 9.3 million Americans were unemployed as of May, a separate BLS release showed
U.S. ports continue to break records as consumers spend more money on goods rather than services such as restaurants, bars, sporting events and concerts.
- The Port of Long Beach said the United States’ second-busiest port “continued its unprecedented streak of single-month records in May by moving more than 900,000 cargo containers for the first time in its 110-year history”
- The port handled 907,216 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) in May, breaking the previous “best month” record set just two months earlier by 66,829 TEUs
Delays are expected to persist at shipping terminals worldwide due to COVID-related port closures and a significant increase in trade volumes, as well as challenges with winter weather on the horizon.
- At Yantian Port in Shenzhen, one of the world’s largest ports, there is now an average waiting time of 16 days per vessel
- The cost of moving a container from Asia to Europe is now at record levels – above $10,000 for the first time ever
The U.S. economy’s rebound from the pandemic is driving the biggest surge in inflation since 2008, with consumer prices rising in May by 5% from a year ago. However, annual inflation measurements are being boosted by comparisons with figures from 2020 during pandemic-related lockdowns - when prices plummeted because of collapsing demand for many goods and services.
- Inflation tied to a gauge of consumer spending that is closely watched by the Federal Reserve is up 3.9% over the past year, the largest 12-month increase since 2008 and well above the Fed’s 2% target for annual price increases
- Core inflation, which excludes volatile food and energy costs, rose 0.5% in May and is up 3.4% over the past 12 months, the biggest jump since 1991
The networks which make up the global food supply chain have been significantly impacted from lockdowns and freight shortages that were caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- A key indicator for global food prices, the UN's Food and Agricultural Organization's (FAO) Food Price Index reported in June that the cost of its basket of agricultural commodities was up by 40% on the year
- Within its index, vegetable oils were up by 125%, cereals including rice were 36% higher, and sizable increases for sugar, dairy and meat products were also recorded. The FAO also recorded that rice prices were down by 4.5% on year
Poultry prices have soared to record levels after several large fast-food restaurant chains recently launched fried chicken sandwiches. Sales have also surged with consumers preparing more meals at home during the pandemic. Meanwhile, poultry producers have struggled to keep up with the growing demand due to labor shortages at meat plants and severe storms.
- U.S. producer prices for processed poultry jumped to an all-time high in May, climbing 2.1% in the eighth straight monthly increase, U.S. government data showed
- Gains in poultry outpaced the 0.8% increase in the broader producer price index
Brian Beattie is Lineage’s Senior Vice President of Sales. In his role, Brian supports Sales Managers across Lineage’s facility network who are responsible for working collaboratively with our operations to deliver excellent service to our customers day-in and day-out. Prior to joining the Lineage team, Brian held several leadership positions at Preferred Freezer Services, CHEP, Ryder Systems, Tenneco Automotive and Pepsico. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Transportation from Michigan State University.
- Labor: Labor issues have had the most impact on the supply chain this quarter – not just in the U.S., but around the globe. The reset is underway, but it is difficult to find enough talent to provide the appropriate levels of service throughout the entire farm-to-fork journey. These labor issues have in turn impacted raw materials, supplies, and companies’ ability to produce. Our relationships with customers at the end of the supply chain all the way to frontline workers gives us exposure to the issue firsthand – and we predict labor improvements as we edge closer to 2022.
- Port Challenges: Lineage’s port-centric facilities are seeing more challenges than ever before due to a rise in “mega” container ships docking at ports which have limited capacity and infrastructure to meet the needs of the ship. Challenges particularly focus on labor, which would allow ships to be unloaded and re-loaded on schedule. Historically, container ships would arrive consistently, and this created a natural rhythm and consistent labor demands. To shield customers from port challenges, Lineage is creating solutions for customers that allows them in some cases to reduce overall logistics costs. For example, Lineage is able to introduce a consolidation program where customers with similar logistics routes are brought together to utilize alternative port locations outside of LA/Long Beach, NY/NJ or Houston.
- Pallets: We’ve seen a shortage of wooden pallets as a result of higher lumber prices, pandemic-era dislocation of pallet inventory, and increased demand for chilled and frozen goods. Roughly 90% of food moves through the supply chain on pallets and to meet the heightened demand there is a significant increase in pallets prices.
Growing our network to serve your supply chain – how, where and when you need us.
It’s no longer an option to diversify your transportation portfolio, it’s critical to your success. As the industry struggles to fill OTR truck driver positions, food retail sales continue to skyrocket. In fact, January 2021 saw a $60 million year-over-year increase alone. Following our recent acquisition of Cryo-Trans, we’re thrilled to share our thoughts on the strategic value of rail and how we’re equipped to help reimagine your supply chain.
Lineage and the world’s fastest-growing and most active venture capital firm in logistics technology, 8VC, announced a longstanding strategic alliance to invest in and revolutionize the transportation and logistics technology sector.
Lineage announced its multi-year sponsorship of professional golfer Justin Thomas. As part of the sponsorship, Thomas will wear Lineage’s logo during official tournaments and associated public events, and Lineage will commit $100,000 to the Justin Thomas Foundation and its associated charities through donations as well as event support.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recognized Better Plants partner Lineage Logistics for its success in energy procurement and for cultivating an innovative data science team that has earned 14 patents and saved millions of dollars in annual energy costs.
Harld Peters has been appointed as Senior Vice President of Europe, where he will oversee all of Lineage’s European operations. Harld brings extensive experience leading technology-driven transformation and accelerated growth across a variety of roles.
Constantly expanding to meet our customers' demand.
Expansion: Gdansk, Poland
Lineage’s expansion at our Gdansk facility is driven by demand in the market from current customers and projected to open in Q1 2022. This expansion includes 7,600 additional pallet positions, 33,000 square feet and an added blast chamber.
Expansion: Port of Aarhus
Our expansion at the Port of Aarhus facility takes advantage of changes to the sea routes by adding an additional 14,500 positions and 107,000 square feet and is projected to open in Q3 2022.
Our new, fully automated, state-of-the-art facility in Portsmouth will include 30,000 pallet positions with blast freezing capabilities. Lineage’s new Portsmouth location provides our customers access to key markets across the globe through its proximity to the Port of Virginia’s world-renowned VA International Gateway (VIG)., an integrated network of highways, air, rail, and sea services.
Lineage is relentless in our pursuit of offering a complete end-to-end supply chain offering for our customers around the globe. To add to our footprint, in June Lineage announced that it had reached an agreement to acquire Kloosterboer Group, a leading independent integrated platform for temperature-controlled storage, logistics and value-added services in Europe. The acquisition combines highly strategic and complementary European facility footprints and diversified logistics capabilities.
Welcoming the industry’s most respected teams into our Lineage family.
Lineage bolsters European transportation offering with the acquisition of UTI Forwarding. UTI Forwarding is a Rotterdam-based freight forwarder specializing in exporting and importing of Full Container Load (“FCL”) cargo, handling temperature-controlled and other containerized goods.
Lineage adds a location in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania with nearly 3 million cubic feet of capacity.
The acquisition of Frigorificos de Navarra and a cold storage facility from Frioastur marks Lineage's entry into the Spanish market with locations in Milagro and Gijón.
Claus Sørensen is a leading cold storage company in Denmark, operating nine facilities strategically located near major fishing ports and food production facilities.
Check out our dynamic network of cold storage facilities across the globe.
Working together to help feed the world.
Lineage Announces Sponsorship of Kelley James' Million Meals Tour
Lineage is sponsoring American singer and entertainer Kelley James and his Million Meals Tour to raise funds for those facing food insecurity across the United States. Through the tour, James will continue his partnership with Steph and Ayesha Curry, through their Foundation Eat. Learn. Play., and Feeding America, through Meals UP, to donate at least one million meals by performing CDC compliant, private, acoustic shows for hosts, their families, and close friends. The tour route for 2021 includes shows at 53 locations across the United States.