Tag Archives: Green Supply Chain

Video: Tokyo office grows own food in vertical farm

sn_sushi_Krzysztof Puszczyński

In a country with very little arable land (only 12% compared with 20% in the US), in one of the most populated cities in the world, one company chose to give up 43,000 square feet of valuable workspace to grow food. In the Tokyo headquarters of human resources company Pasona Group they grow 200 species of fruits and vegetables and even rice that are harvested and served to employees.

The indoor urban farm doesn’t just provide food, but by mixing work space and farm space, the company tries to provide a healthier quality of life for employees. Here green isn’t just a window dressing: immediately upon entering the building you walk over a 1,000-square-foot rice paddy, continue through an okra field and you enter the vine-covered “tomato guest room” or the “vegetable factory” filled with hundreds of hydroponic heads of lettuce. On the second floor, fruit trees form partition walls between meeting spaces, bean sprouts are grown under benches and herbs grow on shelving along the walls.

Even the outside of the building is covered in plants helping keep the building cool in summer and warmer in winter. According to the farm’s designers Kono Designs, “it is the largest and most direct farm-to-table of its kind ever realized inside an office building in Japan.”

Photo: Krzysztof Puszczyński

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News You Can Use: 1/13/2016

sn_windows_Ricky Kharawala

  • A.T. Kearney Is Just Plain Wrong

    Not only are more than half of US manufacturers considering reshoring now, we have some really great examples of success stories including GE Appliance Park, Starbucks, Apple and others. In addition, we can point to other companies such as Haier, Nissan and Smithfield Foods where Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) has directly resulted in the establishment of more manufacturing in America.

    All of the signs and statistics (other surveys by Boston Consulting Group, Alix Partners and several European studies) point to the rebuilding of manufacturing in America and in Western Europe. The trend is strong and we are very optimistic that it will continue to be so. US jobs loss to offshoring is now about equivalent to jobs created or reshored to America. We need to be reshoring supporters and make more of this happen, not detractors.


  • How Quitting Can Get You Exactly What You Want

    Quit selling those cheap houses to those unqualified, needy people who he didn’t like working with. If he was going to attract million-dollar sellers, he was going to have to give up on working with $100,000 homes. That meant reaching way out of his comfort zone and giving up on what he had built so far. If Jon was going to gain traction, pick up luxury sellers and earn more money, he was going to have to project the image of expertise, confidence and exclusivity. Exclusivity meaning he had to be selective of who he worked with. The days of taking on any old client were gone. If they didn’t fit the luxury mold, he had to refer them out.



    More than six billion dollars: That’s how much health care providers and consumers will be spending every year on artificial intelligence tools by 2021—a tenfold increase from today—according to a new report from research firm Frost & Sullivan. (Specifically, it will be a growth from $633.8 million in 2014 to $6,662.2 million in 2021.)


  • Strategic Sourcing predictions for 2016

    the doctor is already seeing a number of 2016 posts about how this is the year we replace “negotiate” with “collaborate” (which the thought leaders have been saying since strategic sourcing decision optimization started becoming common in the leading Sourcing organizations, also known as the Hackett Group top 8%), that analytics will take off (which is the same speech we heard 15 years ago when Business Objects and Cognos were the names in analytics), that the skills gap will finally be addressed (which reminds the doctor of conversations he was having nine years ago), and so on. It looks like the amount of future sh!t that is going to be dumped upon you this year is greater than the truckload Biff Tannen had dumped upon his head in the original Back to the Future movie, way back in 1985. (A reference that is very appropriate because every year at this time it seems we get taken back to the future.)


  • To connect to last week’s podcast, How Millennials Are Affecting the Supply Chain

    Respondents said that the biggest impact millennials will have on the supply chain is in terms of how they change the way consumers buy. The move towards new marketplaces – online, mobile, via social media – will be one of the transformative ways supply chains will be affected.


  • In 2016, Intel’s Entire Supply Chain Will Be Conflict-Free

    Since Intel and other manufacturers began the program, the profits from mines have started flowing to miners themselves rather than to war. In the last study of three of the major materials—tungsten, tantalum, and tin—a nonprofit called the Enough Project found that the amount of money going to conflict had dropped 65%, and it continues to fall.


Photo: Ricky Kharawala

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The Supply Chain: 1/28/2015


  • Should companies hire supply chain EHS leaders?

    Given this approach to supplier relationship management, it’s a wonder whether or not enterprises are creating environmental, health and safety positions within procurement departments. According to the National Association for Environmental Management, an EHS manager oversees internal and external operations to ensure all suppliers and staff are abiding by national EHS regulations in addition to supporting progressive environmental policies and worker safety programs.


  • Demand forecast practices that make customers happy:

    For a company to identify and take advantage of the patterns related to demand forecasting, they need to follow three best practices:
    1.) Implement forecasting software
    2.) Improve processes relating to inventory and sales
    3.) Focus on the customer


  • Turning supply chain into an innovation engine.
    Nothing we haven’t heard, but an good summary and it shows the projects we are looking to take on are in the right direction…

    For many companies, the simplest form of analytics is looking at customer demands and patterns; then leveraging the gathered insights to build innovative and differentiated services—delivering greater value to the consumer and the businesses bottom-line.


  • Best practices for a lean international supply chain operation

    5. Adopt a control tower approach:
    Companies today want to increase their end-to-end supply chain visibility. This visibility, though, is much more than track and trace. Today’s global supply chain requires a high degree of operational readiness and synchronization of end-to-end activities, including integrating the flow of goods, information and money associated with the movement of goods. Best in class companies achieve this visibility using a control tower approach. A control tower approach is the cornerstone to agility, responsiveness, and visibility.
    With this approach, companies can reduce inventory, lower total landed costs and decrease cycle times by connecting planning and execution, from raw materials to delivery to the end customer. This end-to-end supply chain connection involves integrating import/export data and information from overseas suppliers, logistics providers, brokers and carriers. Without the big picture, it is nearly impossible to implement cost-saving strategies such as just-in-time inventory replenishment.


  • There is an IT Asset Management module for sharepoint…

  • The cheese has moved…

    Stated bluntly, many of today’s sourcing and procurement professionals are not going to be successful in this new world. Those who make the transition probably already demonstrated innovative and adaptive behaviors. CPOs should begin now to retool their organizations with the talent that enables rather than hinders transformation. CPOs should focus on five key competencies in rebuilding their organizations:
    1. Consultative attitude
    2. Financial sophistication
    3. Communication and change management skills
    4. Technical savvy
    5. Vendor management skills


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The Supply Chain: 1/21/2015


  • Assessing and managing risk: Interview with IBM’s Louis R. Ferretti

    As supply chains have become more global, the complexities of managing risk across vast and varied physical and political geographies arguably have grown by orders of magnitude. That’s a lesson that IBM, one of the world’s largest technology companies, has taken to heart. Beginning in 2009, the company undertook the task of building a complex supply chain risk management tool, now deployed globally, that provides managers with a way to examine supply risk in a much more robust fashion than ever before.


  • Supply chain risk has companies on edge:

    In its fourth such survey, the Allianz Risk Barometer 2015 shows “business interruption and supply chain” risks remains of most concern for 47 per cent of respondents for the third year in succession.


  • Corrupt government procurement leads to $1.5 trillion mistake:

    The F-35 fighter jet was supposed to do a bit of everything, as James Fallows explains in “The Tragedy of the American Military”. Instead, the aircraft can barely do anything: it has trouble flying at night, its engines have exploded during takeoff, and early models suffered structural cracks. There’s no end in sight, either. The all-in costs of this airplane are estimated to be as much as $1.5 trillion. (That’s approximately the same price as the entire Iraq War.) In an Atlantic magazine video, Fallows explains how such a disastrous project came to be—and why it can’t be stopped.


  • Making supply chain green:

    Workers in sustainable supply chain management must be adept at negotiating supply chain complexities and creatively applying broad business and environmental knowledge. Weaving between profit-related subjects and environmental research generated by NGOs, they innovate cross-sector solutions seamlessly. These workers represent a new breed of eco-polymath and they are in demand.


  • Is There a Third Option for SCM Executives Looking to Revamp their Supply Chain Management Operations?

    Improvements need to be achieved in months, not years, a reality that can only be realized through a managed services partnership in which the only measure of success is tied to the operational improvements resulting from the program. While many supply chain executives have never seriously considered managed services as an SCM option due to liability, performance or security risk concerns, this is indeed an economical, efficient and strategically viable solution that supply chain leaders should consider to deliver operational performance.


  • What if the Problem Isn’t the Rules, but the People? [This is a good article on Federal sourcing, but it applies]

    The study found that while there certainly are problems in buying and implementing the latest technology in government, “many federal leaders believe that these problems are the result of execution of the procurement process rather than regulatory requirements.” While nearly 40 percent of the more than 500 survey respondents had some influence in the procurement process, only one of them cited problems with the Federal Acquisition Regulation in written comments.


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