When the massive container ship Ever Given got stuck in the mud outside the Suez Canal at the end of March, it became the poster child for the ongoing supply chain crisis.
Yes, the vessel’s two-week immobility slowed the movement of goods around the world, but that grounded ship was a relatively small snarl for distributors, who have been dealing with all manner of supply chain slowdowns this spring.
“We’ve been faced with a myriad of issues that have popped up, and it’s been a whack-a-mole situation,” says Shane McCarthy, SVP supply chain, product management and marketing at Chicago-based industrial distributor Lawson Products. “You address one thing and something else comes up. It’s a challenging time.”
McCarthy addresses these issues in the recent article, Supply Chain Snarls Threaten to Temper Strength of Economic Upswing. (This article is for MDM Premium subscribers; log in to your subscription to read the full report. Not a subscriber? Click here to learn more about joining MDM Premium.)
McCarthy’s lament is echoed by Brian Bushelow, the supply chain director for Raleigh, North Carolina-based HVACR distributor ACR Supply. Like Lawson, ACR is dealing with much more than headaches caused by a clogged shipping lane on the other side of the world.
“There are always issues, but none that have slowed down the supply chain to the same degree as recent weeks and months,” Bushelow says. “Mostly, you have one issue at a time, and that stuff can be…