Last week, we reported President Joe Biden held a summit to address supply chain shortages on our sister site, AndNowUKnow. Since then, global woes have continued to ripple throughout the supply chain as major California ports are reporting their worst unloading backlogs to date. While shipment of products has been delayed, one silver lining is that it is a good sign for the U.S. economy.
“The cargo surge we have experienced for more than a year continues. September volume at the Port of Los Angeles landed just shy of 900,000 TEU's (20ft Equivalent Unit),” Los Angeles Port Executive Director Gene Seroka said in a recent statement. “That’s the best September in the Port’s 140-year history, edging out last year’s mark by a little shy of two percent. The surge continues to be driven by the American consumer, which is good news for our economy.”
As of Tuesday, October 19, 100 container ships were stuck waiting to unload their cargo at the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach, both of which have recently reached agreements to operate 24/7, we reported on ANUK.
Newsweek reported that this has set a new record of ships waiting to be offloaded, with the previous record of 97 ships being set in September. This is a stark contrast to activity prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, where the same ports would typically see an average of 17 anchored ships at any given time, further amplifying the drastic increase in bottlenecks.
In addition to his recent summit, President Biden has also taken other measures to help the escalating the supply chain situation. This past June, he established a task force to tackle the challenge, and in August named a special port envoy, John D. Porcari.
As the issue persists, the president has also highlighted the importance of lasting improvements to infrastructure in the U.S. We also reported on our ANUK site the president’s intentions to move things along in his Build Back Better Agenda, established to ensure these challenges do not remain constant.
“We need to take a longer view and invest in building greater resiliency to withstand the kinds of shocks we've seen over and over, year in and year out, the risk of pandemic, extreme weather, climate change, cyberattacks, weather disruptions,” President Joe Biden explained.
Deli Market News will keep an eye on the wire and report on the impacts and initiatives being taken for our industry.