AFP Global Logistics https://afplus.com Global Logistics Service, Domestic & International Shipping Wed, 07 Aug 2019 16:06:17 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.2.2 https://afplus.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/favicon.ico AFP Global Logistics https://afplus.com 32 32 Medical Logistics: Challenges and Solutions https://afplus.com/medical-logistics-challenges-solutions/ Wed, 07 Aug 2019 16:06:17 +0000 https://afplus.com/?p=2817 Over 3 trillion dollars: this is a number that will be in the news a lot between now and the 2020 election. This is the amount of money spent on healthcare in the United States. While the most expensive part of the system is staff costs, medical and pharmaceutical supplies are the second most expensive component of health care. Although the development and production of these supplies account for some of the cost, so does medical and pharmaceutical logistics. According to Zion Market Research, the

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Over 3 trillion dollars: this is a number that will be in the news a lot between now and the 2020 election. This is the amount of money spent on healthcare in the United States.

While the most expensive part of the system is staff costs, medical and pharmaceutical supplies are the second most expensive component of health care. Although the development and production of these supplies account for some of the cost, so does medical and pharmaceutical logistics.

According to Zion Market Research, the medical transportation services market is “valued at USD 21.82 billion in 2017 and is expected to reach USD 31.51 billion globally by 2026.”

Like many aspects of logistics as a whole, the transportation of medical and pharmaceutical supplies is influenced by many factors, but it has an added stress. The accuracy and speed of medical and pharmaceutical logistics can be the difference between life and death.

This means that companies must utilize the latest technologies, understand regulations, and know the unique needs of each shipment. Here are four challenges medical and pharmaceutical logistics face, and ways the logistics industry is finding solutions. 

Supply Chain Security

Today, technologies like blockchain can ensure the security of shipments around the world. For medical and pharmaceutical logistics, this is an especially important technology to embrace. Blockchain imprints a unique code on a shipment, allowing it to be tracked and traced throughout shipping.

This type of security and tracking is important because “regulators and companies can determine the authenticity, identity and whereabouts of a particular drug product.” 

Pharmaceutical companies need seamless supply chain management to meet regulations. AFP Global Logistics allows our clients the security they need, with access to real-time data and metrics through our client platform. 

New Developments in Medicine 

Today, patient-specific therapies, medicines and treatments are on the rise. Previously doctors prescribed medicines based on the condition of the patient, and perhaps other factors like age, gender, and medical history.

However, recent years have seen a rise in therapies tailor-made for patients, sometimes based specifically on their genome or the genetic reason for their condition. 

While this is great news in medicine and for patients, it presents a challenge for the logistics industry. Where previously drug companies manufactured therapies at larger scales and shipped them to pharmacies and hospitals, now, drugs may need to get directly to patients.

This shift in medicine means that logistics companies must have close relationships with their clients, offer flexible logistics solutions, and develop last-mile delivery options. 

Climate Control 

Medical and pharmaceutical products are also unique in that they almost always have to be climate controlled. Extreme temperatures can disrupt the efficacy of both solid and liquid medicines, as well as medical technology products.

Traditionally, shippers took the temperature of products only at unloading and loading points.

This provided some information, but not a complete picture. During transportation, clients lacked temperature data. This can be especially problematic at the end unloading point. If temperatures were not suitable, but it wasn’t discovered until delivery, patients might not get the medicine they need. 

Today, smart packing, wireless and Bluetooth technologies, and real-time temperature tracking devices allow shippers to continually monitor temperature data. AFP Global Logistics offers a full range of services in cold chain logistics.

All of our ground, air, and rail transportation offer climate-controlled transportation while our warehousing and storage can also be climate-controlled. 

Customs and Documentation 

Recent uncertainty in global trade leads to increased challenges in cross-border logistics. This extends to medical and pharmaceutical logistics.

Recently, the United Kingdom’s Department of Health and Social Care announced they would spend up to 3 million GBP to transport medicines, blood and transplant tissue in case of a no-deal Brexit. They recognize that having fast, easy access to the medicines and pharmaceuticals the country needs is of vital importance. 

Here in the United States, President Donald Trump recently suggested that to reduce medical costs, the country should consider importing prescription drugs from Canada.

According to Kaiser Health News, “The proposal would permit pilot programs developed by states, pharmacies or drug distributors that sought to safely import prescription medications from Canada.”

This has the potential to open up new streams of pharmaceutical shipping, which would need to adhere to regulations and industry standards. AFP Global Logistics has over 25 years of experience in the logistics industry, including international transportation and logistics. We offer customs house brokerage, full documentation preparation, import-export services, and AES compliance. 

If you have questions about our medical and pharmaceutical logistics, please contact us. Our professionals are happy to discuss your shipment.  

Contact us today for more information on our international logistics services. Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at quotes@afplus.com, or fill out our contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.

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Why Digital Supply Chains Matter https://afplus.com/why-digital-supply-chains-matter/ Wed, 24 Jul 2019 16:56:28 +0000 https://afplus.com/?p=2806 Developments in this fourth industrial revolution are transforming how business gets done. This is especially true for the shipping and logistics industry. In our more than 25 years of businesses, we’ve seen the internet become a vital part of our business and the developments of real-time tracking and shipment security. While the term digital supply chain used to refer to the electronic transfer of goods, today it describes the intersection of big data, automation, and technology in supply chains. Today, technology is an integral part

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Developments in this fourth industrial revolution are transforming how business gets done. This is especially true for the shipping and logistics industry.

In our more than 25 years of businesses, we’ve seen the internet become a vital part of our business and the developments of real-time tracking and shipment security.

While the term digital supply chain used to refer to the electronic transfer of goods, today it describes the intersection of big data, automation, and technology in supply chains.

Today, technology is an integral part of supply chains. Here are five ways digital supply chains are changing the transportation logistics industry.

Digital supply chains make the world smaller

As recent issues in global trade show, supply chains are global. Parts might be manufactured in one country while final assembly takes place in another.

A company might need to recover assets from a country where they otherwise have no presence. Interruptions to supply chains have always happened — from labor disputes to natural disasters to changes in trade policy.

Today, however, technology allows us to navigate these challenges better. Real-time information about what’s happening around the globe allows us to make changes as necessary, ensuring that shipments still arrive as scheduled. 

Global is in our name for a reason. At AFP, many of our services include international logistics. Our team provides their expertise in security, customs, and import/ export regulations to ensure that your shipment arrives safely, on time.      

Supply chains that incorporate AI can be more effective

Digital supply chains can use artificial intelligence, machine learning, and big data to become more effective. These newly-emerging technologies can quickly analyze data from around the world, including shipping routes, traffic at sea and inland ports, and inventories.

The results allow shipping companies to optimize everything from shipping routes to travel time. Additionally, warehouse use AI and data to more effectively lay out goods within the warehouse, load trucks and transportation vehicles, and ensure timely arrival of goods. 

Technologies like Blockchain can increase trade 

Last year, a white paper released during the World Economic Forum estimated that distributed ledger technology (DLT) like Blockchain could facilitate an estimated $1.1 Billion in trade growth over the next 10 years. At AFP, we know the older methods of shipping involved a lot of paperwork.

These processes can create delays, make tracking a shipment more difficult, and generally don’t fit with our digital world. DLTs reduce paperwork, therefore reducing delays, transportation costs, and security risks.

Technologies like Blockchain can put a stamp of embedded data on goods, which means we can securely track shipments anywhere in the world.  

Digitization can reduce supply chain barriers

Part of the increase in trade will be due to a reduction of supply chain barriers, according to the World Economic Forum. Security provides one barrier in supply chains.

“In global digital supply-chain transactions, it is essential for a legal entity to prove its own identity and check those of other parties, each of which requires a unique, verifiable and authentic digital signature,” writes Henrik Hvid Jensen the Senior Blockchain Advisor for Trustworks.

Customs officials, shippers, and companies can use a secure, digital signature to easily validate a shipment and each other, thus reducing shipping time and room for errors.  

Digital supply chains are more consumer-centric

Same- and next-day delivery options are becoming standard for online purchases. Consumers want everything from groceries to diapers delivered at home.

The shipping industry has to keep up with these demands. Increasingly, this means more warehouses and storage closer to urban areas for fast shipping and more focus on the last miles of a delivery from warehouse to a consumer’s door.

Enhancements in tracking technology allow a consumer to know exactly when a package is out for delivery. 

Consumers also want to be sure their shipments are safe and verified. According to Freight Waves, technology like Blockchain can be especially helpful with time-sensitive shipments like food.

“[Blockchain] can put checks across every single step within a supply chain, making sure there is proper quality control, food handling, and that all the requirements with regard to testing and certification are met,” they write.

At AFP Global Logistics, our 25 years of experience and adaptation to evolving technology make us the best choice for your logistics needs. We know that technology plays a critical role in logistics and shipping in today’s global marketplace. 

To learn more about what we can do for you, contact AFP Global Logistics at 800-274-1237 or send us an email. You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter,Google+ andPinterest.

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The Many Sides of a Successful Trade Show https://afplus.com/successful-trade-show/ Wed, 10 Jul 2019 16:05:45 +0000 https://afplus.com/?p=2797 The trade show and convention market makes up a large portion of the U.S. economy. Over 250 convention centers in the United States host hundreds of thousands of people a year. Surveys show that an average of 5,000 people attend these conferences and trade shows, while 59% of events host more than 100 exhibitors. Companies are also willing to spend large budgets on trade shows. According to Statista, about 50% of companies surveyed allocate more than $1 million to their convention and meeting budget. According

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The trade show and convention market makes up a large portion of the U.S. economy. Over 250 convention centers in the United States host hundreds of thousands of people a year.

Surveys show that an average of 5,000 people attend these conferences and trade shows, while 59% of events host more than 100 exhibitors. Companies are also willing to spend large budgets on trade shows.

According to Statista, about 50% of companies surveyed allocate more than $1 million to their convention and meeting budget. According to Exhibitor Magazine, a majority of companies have either increased or maintained their trade show budgets for 2019. 

This means that in the U.S. each year, companies must find a way to get their exhibits to trade shows across the country. At AFP Global Logistics, half of our business is dedicated to trade show logistics.

With more than 25 years of expertise in shipping, we are well situated to fulfill the complex logistics needs for trade shows and conventions. Here are factors to consider before, during, and after a trade show to ensure a successful event and exhibit. 

Pre-Planning

If you haven’t already decided how to ship your trade show materials, consider a company that specializes in trade show logistics. While your company can ship the materials, providers who specialize in trade show logistics understand the requirements of trade show and convention center, and the nuances of shipping.  

In a 2013 Exhibition Logistics Trends & Best Practices Study, a survey asked both show managers and exhibitors about their experiences with trade show logistics. Respondents expressed concern with handling materials and customer service. The survey suggested that many times, shippers are not aware of how to handle materials of different sizes and don’t know the rules and deadlines of shipping. 

At AFP Global Logistics, we provide timely information to exhibitors, associations, and planners, and work to customize our services to meet your needs, and the regulations of the event. Our experts provide everything you need to ensure your shipment arrives safely.

We can assist with customs and import documentation and security concerns. We can also pack items to ensure they are safely transported to the show. If your materials have to arrive in advance of the event, we also offer short- and long-term storage in warehouse facilities. 

Another theme that emerged from survey responses included provided better shipment tracking. From our experience, we know that trade shows follow a strict timeline, and shipments have to arrive exactly when they are supposed to. A late shipment can make an event a failure. Our experienced team will always make sure a shipment arrives on time. 

However, even if a shipment will arrive on time, not knowing where it is can also cause stress. Through our pre-planning process, we know the requirements of your event.

We also use technology to provide tracking for our shipments. This ensures that your shipment is not lost in an en-route to delivery gray zone, but you know exactly when it will arrive and the status of the shipment. 

At the Event

During the show, a drayage contractor provides logistics within the event. The contractor unloads materials from shipping company drives. They move exhibit materials into the exhibition hall, store boxes and crates once your display is up and during the event, and then return the boxes at the end of the show.

The load the materials back onto freight trucks at the end of the event. Effective communication with the drayage team ensures that your materials make it to the trade show floor, and then back again.

We can work with you and your trade show team to make sure that the drayage contractor fully understands your materials and exhibit. We also make sure that you know when your materials will arrive so that you have the proper amount of time to set up for the show. 

Afterwards 

Before the completion of the show, we ensure that the drayage contractor knows when and where to pick up your materials, and when and where to deliver them. Unfortunately, the 2013 survey also highlighted exhibitor’s disappointment with drayage contractors and concern about damage to show displays and exhibits. If any damage occurs, we can file a claim on your behalf. 

We also offer comprehensive expo services, including door-to-show, show-to-door logistics, and white glove service. We can be onsite to assist with drayage contractors and event logistics. 

The expo experts at AFP Expo are here to help handle all of your trade show logistics and event shipping services. To learn more about what we can do for you, contact AFP Global Logistics at 800-274-1237 or send us an email. You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ andPinterest.

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5 Tips for Safe Summer Pet Travel https://afplus.com/safe-summer-pet-travel/ Wed, 03 Jul 2019 14:50:10 +0000 https://afplus.com/?p=2773 Here at AFP Global Logistics, our experts can help you move almost anything anywhere in the world by plane, train, or truck. We offer shipping and logistics solutions to a wide range of industries, customizing our service to meet your needs. However, one thing we don’t do is pet and animal transport. But we love pets, and thought we’d share some great tips for summer pet travel and transportation. Here are 5 ways to keep your pet safe and healthy during travel this summer.  In

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Here at AFP Global Logistics, our experts can help you move almost anything anywhere in the world by plane, train, or truck. We offer shipping and logistics solutions to a wide range of industries, customizing our service to meet your needs.

However, one thing we don’t do is pet and animal transport. But we love pets, and thought we’d share some great tips for summer pet travel and transportation. Here are 5 ways to keep your pet safe and healthy during travel this summer. 

In a Car, Take Your Time 

Many people choose to drive if they are bringing their pet on vacation. Traveling by car can give you more control, but be prepared that it may take longer than expected. Avoid giving food or water to your pet in the car.

However, make sure to stop frequently to allow your dog to use the bathroom, get a drink of water, or just move around a little. Make sure you have enough food and water for the trip. 

On a Flight, Go Straight 

If you choose to fly with your pet, try to book a direct flight. First, this allows your pet the least amount of time in the carrier. If your dog or cat is on the flight with you, they won’t have to deal with boarding and unboarding multiple flights.

If your dog or cat is in a climate-controlled area below the cabin, a direct flight allows them to avoid unnecessary time on the tarmac, or even worse, getting left behind.

Always make sure to tell airline personnel you are traveling with a pet. That way, if the flight experiences any delays, you’ll be able to check the welfare of your furry friend. 

Get the Right Gear 

The ASPCA and Humane Society recommend that your dog (or cat) doesn’t roam around in the car. While a dog sticking his tongue out the window might be really cute, it can also be dangerous for him.

Both organizations recommend a carrier with holes on four sides, with enough room for the dog “to stand, sit, lie down and turn around in” and at least four inches of clearance between the pet’s head and the top of the carrier for proper ventilation. 

At AFP, we take care to know that your shipment is climate controlled if it needs to be. The same goes for your pet: enough ventilation in the carrier allows for proper airflow and cooler temperatures during summer travel.

If you opt against a carrier for your dog, make sure to have a harness that buckles into the car. While this keeps your dog from roaming and causing distractions, the Humane Society reports it won’t protect him in case of a crash. 

Always Be Prepared 

The ASPCA recommends you visit your veterinarian within ten days of travel. First, this allows you to make sure your animal is healthy enough for the trip. You also want to obtain a certificate of health, showing that vaccinations are up-to-date.

Travel with those documents, just in case. Some airlines may also want a proof of vaccinations before they allow your dog or cat to fly with you. 

Your vet can also give you specific tips and recommendations for your animal’s breed when traveling. For example, bulldogs and Pekingese cats should not travel in the cargo hold of the plane, according to the Human Society. Your vet may also be able to prescribe medications to help your pet relax during travel. 

In case you and your pet get separated, make sure your pet has both a microchip and a collar with tags. Tags are the easiest way for someone who finds your animal to contact you.

However, in case the collar and tags also get lost, a microchip allows any veterinarian, animal hospital, or animal shelter to find the owner’s name, phone number, and address. 

Check Out Pet-Friendly Businesses Along the Way 

At home, we all know which parks, restaurants, bars, and coffee shops are dog-friendly. Today, a variety of apps and websites like Bring Fido offer information about dog-friendly travel.

On a road trip or on vacation, make sure you look ahead of time to see which hotels and motels allow pets. Websites can even offer information about which restaurants and cafes have outdoor seating or allow dogs. 

Happy travels this summer! If you need shipping or logistics services for anything other than your pet, contact us today for more information.

Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at info@efn.mmn.mybluehost.me, or fill out our contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.

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Shipping Sunshine with the Amystrong Foundation https://afplus.com/amystrong-foundation/ Tue, 02 Jul 2019 17:12:15 +0000 https://afplus.com/?p=2769 Four years ago, Amy received devastating news many people can’t comprehend yet one in eight women will hear in their lifetime: you have breast cancer. As a 34 year-old mother of three, wife, and daughter, she knew it would be a long, hard road. But she knew she wouldn’t be alone. She created the Amystrong Foundation to provide friendship, support and awareness to breast cancer fighters and their families, during treatment and “long after we are christened ‘survivors’.” Breast cancer is the leading cancer among women,

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Four years ago, Amy received devastating news many people can’t comprehend yet one in eight women will hear in their lifetime: you have breast cancer. As a 34 year-old mother of three, wife, and daughter, she knew it would be a long, hard road. But she knew she wouldn’t be alone. She created the Amystrong Foundation to provide friendship, support and awareness to breast cancer fighters and their families, during treatment and “long after we are christened ‘survivors’.”

Breast cancer is the leading cancer among women, and as a woman-owned certified business, we felt compelled to help Amy in her mission. AFP Global Logistics is a corporate sponsor of the Amystrong Foundation, and pleased to share some of the organization’s work and mission on our blog. 

Amy says that, “The love and support I have received on this journey has inspired me to create The Amystrong Foundation.” She wanted to promote awareness and prevention, but also provide hope to others facing her same diagnosis.

One of the Amystrong’s programs is to provide a little bit of light to anyone undergoing cancer treatment. Their “Box of Sunshine” includes yellow items for cancer patients. Amystrong also knows that even just receiving a thoughtful gift can brighten someone’s day. 

In June, AFP Global Logistics hosted the Amystrong Foundation at our office to award $20,000 in college scholarships. During her own cancer treatment, Amy felt inspired by Marni McNichol. Fifteen years earlier, Marni had shared her own breast cancer story with Amy.

“Despite chemotherapy, radiation, and the unpleasant residual effects of cancer treatment, she fought cancer valiantly — with her infectious smile, immense strength, and unequaled bravery,” Amy says. Marni put her children first until her untimely death from cancer.

Inspired by her, the Amystrong Foundation created the Marni McNichol Scholarship Fund to provide financial assistance to high school seniors who will be attending college and have lost a loved one or had a parent affected by breast cancer.

After five months of chemotherapy, a double mastectomy with lymph node dissection, 30 rounds of radiation, reconstructive surgery and a complete hysterectomy, Amy is in remission and back at life. She is currently the coach for the Ulman Foundation’s Anne Arundel County Cancer to 5K program, which is sponsored by the Amystrong Foundation.

The program gives cancer survivors the opportunity to train for 12 weeks for a 5K race, with the support of a running coach and volunteer ‘sherpas.’ The team is currently looking for participants to start training at the end of July for the Baltimore Running Festival 5K in October.

The Amystrong Foundation raises funds for their work through fundraisers like the Annual Bull & Oyster Roast each fall and the Golf Tournament at Compass Point Golf Course each spring. AFP Global Logistics was proud to be a Gold Sponsor for the 3rd Annual Golf Tournament this year and a sponsor for the Bull and Oyster Roast. 

Amystrong’s tagline is “spreading sunshine,” and since we are great with deliveries, we’re so proud to help the foundation spread and deliver sunshine to families impacted by breast cancer around the region. 

Contact us today for more information on our services. Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at info@efn.mmn.mybluehost.me, or fill out our contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.

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4 Trends in the Air Cargo Industry https://afplus.com/trends-air-cargo/ Wed, 29 May 2019 20:27:07 +0000 http://efn.mmn.mybluehost.me/afp-global-logistics/?p=2745 Every two years, the Air Cargo Europe exhibition and conference brings the world’s leading trade fair for air cargo and logistics to the convention center in Munich, Germany. This year’s conference, from June 4 to 7, will include hundreds of exhibitors from countries across the world, thousands of square feet of exhibition space, and tens of thousands of visitors. The conference focuses on air cargo and air transportation logistics. As with any transportation logistics in the 21st century, the industry event also focuses on mobility, information

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Every two years, the Air Cargo Europe exhibition and conference brings the world’s leading trade fair for air cargo and logistics to the convention center in Munich, Germany.Air Cargo

This year’s conference, from June 4 to 7, will include hundreds of exhibitors from countries across the world, thousands of square feet of exhibition space, and tens of thousands of visitors. The conference focuses on air cargo and air transportation logistics.

As with any transportation logistics in the 21st century, the industry event also focuses on mobility, information technology, and supply chain management, and how those elements work together with logistics. In advance of the conference, here are 4 trends to look for in the air cargo industry.

Increased Technology and Automation

Automation and technology are already vital to our global logistics industry. At AFP Global Logistics, we track all of our shipments, update our clients with progress, and ensure a seamless delivery of all of our products.

We couldn’t do that without a transportation management system and RFID technologies to track not only the shipments, but the vehicles carrying those shipments. As technology advances and new technologies become available, they will further help us in delivering shipments faster and more securely.

For example, blockchain, the code originally created for the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, can also be used to track shipments. According to DC Velocity magazine, “block-chain creates a permanent and incorruptible record that tracks physical movement of a shipment and can aid the investigation into who is to blame for damages incurred along the way.”

As large companies use blockchain in air cargo logistics, the industry will shift towards these methods of secure transportation data.

E-Commerce and the Growth of Air Hubs

You don’t have to be in the logistics industry to know that e-commerce is everywhere. Over 2 billion people are expected to buy goods online in 2021. Many of these products are not manufactured in the country where the person is buying it, so they have to be shipped.

At AFP, our retail logistics services offer retailers value-added transportation, fulfillment, and warehousing services. Because consumers want their online purchases in a matter of days instead of weeks, many companies look to air freight for faster travel times.

According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), global air freight volume went up by 9.1% in 2017, at a higher rate than the historical average. As e-commerce grows, the air cargo industry can expect higher growth, too.

Cold Chain Logistics

Refrigeration in logistics changed everything from how we get our food to how we get medicines. As we all know, heat can damage any number of products, and keeping packages at the appropriate temperature can provide us fresh food, sensitive medications, and even electronics.

Air cargo shortens the time between origin and destination, and as more products need temperature regulation during travel, cool or cold chain logistics will no longer just be refrigerated trucks or train cars, but airplanes and air freight cargo.

Within the pharmaceutical and medical industries, maintaining the proper temperature during transportation can mean the difference between medicines that work and those that don’t.

Our medical and pharmaceutical logistics services offer a seamless supply chain management that meets all regulatory stands and can be customized for any client.

Continued Uncertainty of Global Markets

As we explored in a previous blog post, the world of international logistics is an art. The logistics industry is affected by the large political and global changes in borders and customs.

While the United States has put more pressure on China through increased tariffs, the White House is also trying to increase trade with Japan and rework the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

With this uncertainty, companies may choose to rely more on air cargo because of the speed of shipments.

At AFP Global Logistics, our 25+ years of experience in international and global logistics services make us a leader in the industry. We offer time critical logistics and mission critical logistics, including Next Flight Out (NFO) Air and charter services, from a Lear Jet to a 747 Jumbo Jet.

Our international logistics services include Door-to-Door and Door-to-Airport Air Freight Services.

Contact us today for more information on our international logistics services and air cargo services. Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at info@efn.mmn.mybluehost.me, or fill out our contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.

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The Art of International Logistics https://afplus.com/art-of-international-logistics/ Wed, 15 May 2019 00:10:53 +0000 http://efn.mmn.mybluehost.me/afp-global-logistics/?p=2655 Today, supply chains are global, which means that goods and materials have to travel across international borders. Recent news about border security and threats of less open borders causes concern for the international logistics and shipping industry. Across the world, international logistics industry faces uncertainties. Since early 2019, President Donald Trump has threatened to further secure the border with Mexico, citing concerns about illegal border crossings and national security. The Trump administration is also trying to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with

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Today, supply chains are global, which means that goods and materials have to travel across international borders. Recent news about border security and threats of less open International Logisticsborders causes concern for the international logistics and shipping industry.

Across the world, international logistics industry faces uncertainties. Since early 2019, President Donald Trump has threatened to further secure the border with Mexico, citing concerns about illegal border crossings and national security.

The Trump administration is also trying to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

In Europe, Britain delayed leaving the European Union earlier this year when they could not resolve how open the border would be. And while directly related to border security, an increase in tariffs on items imported from China causes experts to worry about the cost of importing Chinese goods.

While this all may seem like dire news for the international logistics and shipping industry, we constantly face challenges as global trade changes and adjusts over time. At AFP Global Logistics, we have more than 25 years of experiencing in international logistics. Here are two challenges and solutions in the current state of international shipping.

International borders remain solid, international logistics is adaptable

Many trade groups have expressed their frustration with the idea of closing the border. In April, the President and CEO of the National Retail Federation Matthew Shay released a statement expressing concerns for the retail industry.

“Closing the border for any length of time would result in significant supply chain disruptions for U.S. retailers. These disruptions would reverberate throughout the supply chain, impacting everyone from truckers to warehouse workers whose jobs depend on the two-way trade with Mexico,” he wrote.

According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, the value of goods and services traded with Mexico equaled $1.85 billion per day, almost 75% of which crossed the border by ground transportation. However, this does include a combination of freight rail and truck transportation.

In Europe, Britain is facing the prospect of increased border security unless agreements are made with the European Union during Brexit. This could make shipments take longer, cost more, and need more paperwork.

While this may seem like just a problem for Europe, according to experts many U.S. companies use the United Kingdom as a gateway to European markets.

While these are concrete problems that international logistics and shipping companies must deal with, logistics is an adaptable industry. At AFP Global Logistics, we the have experience and resources to deal with these constraints.

While many companies rely solely on one method of transportation, we offer customized solutions and a variety of shipping methods.

In addition to truck and rail ground transportation, we offer Door-to-Door and Door-to-Airport Air Freight Services. We can also provide ocean freight services throughout the United States.

We work with each customer to figure out the best shipping method, and our professionals ensure your product is delivered on time and intact.

Changes in tariffs and customs laws

In the last few months, experts have been concerned with the development of trade between the United States and other countries. First, a lot is happening.

Last summer, President Trump announced tariffs on Chinese imports, and recently, the administration announced new tariffs, with promises of retaliation from China. His administration also wants to replace NAFTA with a new North American trade agreement called the USMCA.

Although these developments leave a lot of uncertainty in global supply chains, governments often change tariffs and customs laws.

The U.S., Mexico, and Canada only agreed to NAFTA in 1994, and it replaced a previous agreement.

The Office of the United States Trade Representative asserts that, “The new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) will support mutually beneficial trade leading to freer markets, fairer trade, and robust economic growth in North America.”

They believe the new agreement will actually facilitate cross-border trade and offer lower costs and improved efficiency for international logistics companies.

Experts like Geoff Pollak, the Managing Director of Alvarez & Marsal, agree. “The new United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement could make cross-border sourcing much more attractive,” he told Logistics Management.

To deal with the uncertainty of Chinese tariffs, U.S.-based shippers are currently bringing in goods at a higher volume in preparation for higher tariffs. The U.S. is currently taxing some goods at 10%, which may be hiked to 25%.

If the U.S. does choose to increase these tariffs, companies may want to consider importing goods via faster shipping methods to avoid higher taxes.

However, even as these tariffs go up, the Trump administration is engaged with ongoing trade negotiations with the European Union and Japan.

“The administration’s delayed and ongoing trade negotiations with the EU and Japan could unlock $12.40 billion and $4.16 billion of tariff reductions respectively,” Chris Rogers, a research analyst at global trade data company Panjiva told Logistics Management

At AFP Global Logistics, our personnel keep up-to-date on the latest security and legal developments, so our customers don’t have to worry about delayed shipments or incorrect processing.

We offer customs house brokerage, full documentation preparation, import-export services, and Advanced Encryption Standard compliant shipping.

For 25 years, AFP Global Logistics has adapted to changing import and export laws. We ensure our shipments clear customs easily and effectively.

If you have questions about how customs law will impact your shipment, please contact us. Our professionals are happy to discuss customs and shipment security.  

Contact us today for more information on our international logistics services. Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at info@efn.mmn.mybluehost.me, or fill out our contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.

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The Future of Ground Transportation https://afplus.com/future-ground-transportation/ Wed, 01 May 2019 18:20:52 +0000 http://efn.mmn.mybluehost.me/afp-global-logistics/?p=2609 Throughout the United States, ground transportation accounts for the largest share of goods shipped. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), trucks carried about 62% of the goods shipped in 2018. In the last 10 years, the ground transportation industry experienced changes in shipment tracking, safer roadways, and multimodal transportation. The future of ground transportation will build and add to these changes. Some companies like Volvo, Tesla, and Daimler are trying to develop self-driving trucks, which would be a major innovation and disruption in

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Throughout the United States, ground transportation accounts for the largest share of goods shipped. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), trucks carried about 62% of the goods shipped in 2018.

In the last 10 years, the ground transportation industry experienced changes in shipment tracking, safer roadways, and multimodal transportation. The future of ground transportation will build and add to these changes.

Some companies like Volvo, Tesla, and Daimler are trying to develop self-driving trucks, which would be a major innovation and disruption in the industry. However, that innovation is much less likely than others already underway.

Even if the trucks of tomorrow will still have drivers, transportation and logistics companies can expect changes in the world of ground transportation over the next 10 years.

Here are three major developments to look out for.

Tomorrow’s Trucks Will Be Greener

The interconnected global economy makes it difficult for economists to estimate fuel prices far in the future. However, more fuel efficient trucks will always mean less expensive Ground Transportationshipping. In the next ten years, expect to see trucks become greener.

One way truck manufacturers are already moving in this direction is by redesigning their trucks. First, new materials and new combinations of materials create lighter weight vehicles.

Some manufacturers have increased their use of fiber-reinforced polymer resins, metal-plastic combinations, and layered metals with lower density and less weight. Others want to redesign the steel frame of the truck.

Reducing this frame or removing it altogether would make trailers lighter and more aerodynamic. These lighter weight trucks and trailers would be more fuel efficient, and therefore shipping could become even more cost efficient.

In essence, a trailer is a box on wheels. Manufacturers of trailers and trucks are also trying to develop aerodynamic design solutions to increase fuel efficiency. Many trucks already utilize side skirts and trailer tails to reduce drag.

These external add-ons can already reduce drag up to 26%, according to a 2013 study. Some manufacturers are experimenting with new designs for trucks to decrease drag. For example, Tesla, Nikola, and Walmart have developed prototypes with sleek, futuristic designs.

New technologies also allow trucks to use less fuel. Idle Smart can automate truck engines and batteries to allow drivers and fleets to reduce fuel consumption during idling.

Next-generation GPS devices may also help drivers get to destinations faster, using less fuel. Finally, some of the companies investing in driverless technology development are also developing hybrid and electric semi trucks.

Ground Transportation Will Be Linked to “The Internet of Things”

Many trucks and trailers are already connected to the internet. This allows shipping and logistics companies the opportunity to track shipments accurately, increasing efficiency of transportation and decreasing the cost of shipping.

This trend will only continue in the next 10 years, and ground transportation will become even more tied to the internet. “The trailer is going to become a rolling database,” Robert Lane, vice president of product engineering at Wabash National Corp, told Transportation Topics

There will be more connectivity, more electronics and more data gathering on the trailer. All of this data will help fleets improve operations and be more efficient.” Wabash is the leading manufacturer of semi trailers in North America.

Trailers of the future may be able to detect maintenance issues before they become a problem. Logistics companies could remotely monitor important parts of the trailer through sensors.

Elements like tire pressure, wheel bearing temperature, lighting, and brakes could be monitored for issues before a problem occurs. This monitoring would decrease truck breakdowns and delayed shipments.

Connectivity and the Internet of Things may also lead to more effective loading and unloading. Sensors inside trailers could match cargo with unloading points, while goods inside a warehouse could be connected to specific trailers.

Some manufactures have considered trailer designs with an open-top, which would allow goods to be loaded overhead with a robotic crane. Robotics and radio-frequency identification (RFID) already increase the speed and efficiency inside warehouses, and this technology could be further combined with loading and unloading.  

At AFP Global Logistics, we offer comprehensive retail logistics services. Our customized solutions are efficient and productive to provide the best return on investment.

E-Commerce Will Change Ground Transportation

In 2016, BTS estimated that goods travelling by ground went less than 100 miles between origin and destination. E-commerce and more warehouses may shorten that distance even more.

Previously, retailers ordered goods from manufacturers and customers purchased those goods in a brick-and-mortar store. Today, offline sales are still 10 times higher than online sales, but the online market is growing, especially among younger people.

The Texas A&M Transportation Institute believes an increase in online sales will increase urban warehouses and the number of smaller trucks delivering packages from warehouses to consumers.

Consumers also expect faster and faster delivery times, which further disrupts the traditional industry. Instead of packages arriving from large warehouses far away, trucks may only be delivering goods from smaller warehouses closer to urban areas.

Modern supply chains already rely on multimodal transportation, that is the use of air, rail, and land. Instead of relying mainly on ground transportation, people may have to rely on multimodal transportation to get products and goods quickly.

Our time critical logistics at AFP rely on multiple modes of transportation to get your shipments where they need to be as quickly as possible.  

The future of shipping by ground transportation will be more fuel efficient, more connected to technology, and may be more consumer driven. All of these changes will also make ground transportation more cost effective.

AFP Global Logistics provides seamless solutions for global shipping in Maryland as well as global logistics service for international and domestics shipments.

Our vast network of shipping options and expert team make sure you are receiving the best and fastest transportation possible.

Contact us today for more information on our ground logistics services. Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at info@efn.mmn.mybluehost.me, or fill out our quick and easy contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Global Logistics on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest.

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How the Internet of Things Hinders Cybersecurity https://afplus.com/internet-cybersecurity-transportation/ Wed, 17 Apr 2019 15:12:28 +0000 http://efn.mmn.mybluehost.me/afp-global-logistics/?p=1088 In an era of increased connectivity and transportation, people are becoming more and more concerned with data privacy and security on the internet. Businesses spend more time and resources to address cybersecurity so that clients feel their information secure. As the Internet of Things, or the concept that the internet is embedded in everyday objects from cars to refrigerators to home security systems, continues to grow, cybersecurity no longer refers to just the information on our computers. Instead, clients and customers have to worry about

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In an era of increased connectivity and transportation, people are becoming more and more concerned with data privacy and security on the internet. Businesses spend more time and resources to address cybersecurity so that clients feel their information secure.

As the Internet of Things, or the concept that the internet is embedded in everyday objects from cars to refrigerators to home security systems, continues to grow, cybersecurity no longer Internet Cybersecurityrefers to just the information on our computers.

Instead, clients and customers have to worry about data information on a variety of platforms. In the world of logistics and shipping, technology and the Internet of Things help improve shipment tracking, storage, analytics, and documentation.

In short, this connectivity increases the speed, effectiveness, and ease of shipping. Today’s logistics industry would not be able to function without this connectivity, but it also presents potential problems.

Any information on the internet can be hacked and is vulnerable to data theft.

At AFP Global Logistics, we ensure that your data and shipments are secure, while delivering seamless, customized freight solutions for our customers. The landscape of digital tracking and cybersecurity change rapidly.

Here are the challenges and solutions for creating strong cybersecurity in logistics and shipping.

Logistics and shipping are made of component parts, that have to all work together for security.

Elements of critical infrastructure include human, cyber, and physical elements. Although computers, software systems, and other cyber elements are often a focus in cybersecurity, these infrastructure elements are all intertwined and work together to make logistics work.

At AFP, our logistics experts work with you to ensure your shipment arrives securely, whether by ground, air, or rail. Our shipments are tracked and technology makes our processes seamless. However, all of these parts have the potential to be a risk.

In creating a Critical Infrastructure Risk Management Framework (RMF) or other risk management policy, companies develop a plan to analyze and assess risk, and create a plan to manage that risk. The first step in the framework involves setting goals and objectives for the risk management plan.

Then, users identify those elements of critical infrastructure, find out what risks each element poses and how to manage the risk, and measure the effectiveness.

In each step of this framework, users can circle back to analyze and rework the plan. One of the critical elements for the success of logistics companies are technology solutions.

And while technology solutions can be a risk factor in cybersecurity, they can also be an asset.

New and developing systems have made logistics solutions faster and more secure than ever before. However, the technology we use everyday puts us at risk of hackers, malware, and data theft. When the scale is bigger, say at a transportation company, the impact is also bigger.

In the summer of 2017, a massive cyber-attack shut down one of the world’s largest shipping companies.

The attack disrupted shipping in four countries, cost over $200 million, and caused tens of thousands of computers to be re-installed. This was a worst-case scenario for any company.

Logistics companies cannot function without technology, a new platforms and software have made shipping easier. For example, a Transportation Management System (TMS) is critical for any logistics company.

This platform allows companies to engage a process that streamlines the shipping process by tracking freight, analyzing shipments and carriers, and evaluate shipments.

Another vital part of almost any internet and information sharing online today involves Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). APIs are codes that allow different software programs to communicate, and are used across the internet to share information.

In the transportation industry, APIs help companies get quotes and rates, transit times, and documents; track shipments; and dispatch carries.

Again, this speed and breadth of this software means easier, faster, and less expensive shipping.

Information sharing on the internet also poses risks, which is where cybersecurity comes into play. A key component of cybersecurity is having software that helps mitigate risks of attacks. For hardware like computers, these can include malware detection, firewalls, and anti-virus software.

Companies can also use secure information transfer on the internet through Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS), Transport Layer Security (TLS), and Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocols.

For logistics companies, these are important security features for computers in offices, but also the technology that allows us to securely track our shipments in trucks, trains, and planes.

Cybersecurity technology is only as effective as the people who use the technology.

According to the National Small Business Association, a cyberattack costs a company an average of more than $20,000 to resolve. A 2018 survey reported that negligent employees caused 40% of security breaches in the workplace.

While a company can put software in place to protect against a host of cybersecurity threats, employees still need training on best practices. One simple practice is updating software regularly.

When Microsoft learned of global ransomware attacks in 2017, they quickly released critical security updates aimed at protecting consumers. Employees should also have strong passwords that they change regularly and lock their computers when not in use.

While they seem simple, these are often practices that employees need to learn or be reminded of in an ever-changing landscape of technology and security.   

Physical infrastructure is just as important as cyber infrastructure.

The last component of critical infrastructure are the vehicles that a logistics and transportation company uses to actually move freight. This can’t be done without the technology and the people behind the scenes, since the process is intertwined.

At with the Internet of Things, the trucks, railcars, and planes can now also be connected to the internet. These vehicles can be tracked and communicate electronically, which is vital for .

Therefore, any system they have that connects them to a larger network should be treated like a computer. These systems should be monitored for irregularities and have malware-detection installed.  

At AFP Global Logistics, our 25 years of experience and adaptation to evolving technology make us the best choice for your logistics needs. We know that cybersecurity plays a critical role in logistics and shipping in today’s global marketplace.

Contact us today to find out more about how we deliver you shipment efficiently and securely.

Call 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at info @efn.mmn.mybluehost.me, or fill out our quick and easy contact form.

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Expo Logistics on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest!

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How To Have a Successful Trade Show: Tips For Business Owners https://afplus.com/successful-trade-show-tips-business-owners/ Wed, 20 Feb 2019 21:01:25 +0000 https://afplus.com/?p=948 The post How To Have a Successful Trade Show: Tips For Business Owners appeared first on AFP Global Logistics.

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Trade shows and expos require a lot of planning, and business owners want to ensure that every step of the process goes as smoothly as possible. From the first moment you establish plans to attend to the moment you set up your booth and materials, every step of the way needs to be organized and well thought out. This can be a challenging process, as it takes months of planning with multiple deadlines, and many items need to be shipped ahead of time. However, when you partner with AFP Expo Logistics, a Division of AFP Global Logistics dedicated to the trade show, expo, and events industries, you can ensure that all of your shipments will arrive on-time and damage free. To ensure you have a successful trade show, read on for some essential tips and information on the benefits of hiring an experienced trade show logistics company.

Double-Check Travel Plans

Planning is an essential aspect of attending trade shows and expos, and business owners should never leave anything until the last minute. When traveling out of town for a trade show, book your flight and hotel months in advance to avoid any issues, then double-check all travel plans leading up to the event. Give yourself peace of mind and verify your flight information, hotel, and other reservations to ensure everything is set and ready for your trip.

Small Details

To plan a successful trade show, it’s essential to know the importance of small details. Little details can get overlooked during the planning process since there is so much going on, so be sure to have a checklist of things you may forget. This may include something as simple as setting up an away message for voicemail and email before leaving for the trip, or planning a meeting with your staff to ensure everyone is on the same page and is prepared for the trade show. Holding a company meeting a few days before leaving allows your staff to ask questions and will cut down on any confusion or miscommunication.

Deadlines and Schedules

Another essential tip is to be aware of all deadlines as far in advance as possible, especially the registration deadline for the event. Business owners should also stick to a schedule of when to accomplish each task leading up to the trade show, starting with their plans to attend. It’s best to establish plans to attend a trade show about six months before the date, as it is necessary to have the time to organize everything early. Set your objective for the trade show and review results from last year, then set your budget based on the financial state of your business.

When the event is four months away, it’s time to plan the construction of your booth, as well as choosing the staffer who will attend the trade show. Keep in mind any deadlines that may be set for discounted rates and services to ensure you get the best deals. Also, this is the time to decide which promotions your company will run leading up to the trade show to generate sales leads.

When the trade show date is about two months away, order any promotional items and uniforms needed for your staff attending the expo. While two months may seem like a lot of time, it’s crucial to get these orders in early to avoid any complications. One month before your trade show can be a very busy and challenging month for some businesses- but if you’ve hired AFP Expo Logistics, we will take care of your shipments for you! All necessary exhibit items will be shipped early to the advanced warehouse, maximizing the time allocated for an efficient set-up of your booth that meets the basic guidelines set by trade show officials. AFP Expo also eliminates any risk of unnecessary expenses and additional wait time by providing logistical consulting and planning services that avoid unforeseen costs passed onto our customers. Hiring a comprehensive service like AFP Expo is the best way to have a successful trade show, as it allows you to focus all of your attention on the trade show and gives you peace of mind knowing that all of your shipping, set-up, and storage needs will be taken care of ahead of time.

AFP Expo Logistics

For the highest-quality logistics handling experience that will be customized to the unique needs of your business, AFP Expo Logistics is the best and only choice! We offer a comprehensive range of shipping services, and our 25 years of experience in the business have given us the tools we need to create personalized logistic solutions for each and every individual customer. For more information or to start designing your own logistic solutions today, get in touch with AFP Expo Logistics at 410.590.1234 (toll-free 800.274.1237), email us at expo@afplus.com, or fill out our quick and easy contact form here!

You can stay up to date with the latest from AFP Expo Logistics on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and Pinterest!

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