Global logistics giants sign up to White House information sharing initiative

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The US Government has announced that 18 participants, including big names such as the Ports of LA and Long Beach, MSC, CMA CGM, Target, FedEx, UPS and CH Robinson, have signed up to a new supply chain information sharing initiative named FLOW.

Global logistics giants sign up to White House information sharing initiative
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

In a statement, the White House said that “the parties will work together with the Administration to develop a proof-of-concept information exchange to ease supply chain congestion, speed up the movement of goods, and ultimately cut costs for American consumers”.

The White House added that the US Department for Transportation (DOT) would lead this effort, “playing the role of an honest broker and convener to bring supply chain stakeholders together to problem solve and overcome coordination challenges.”

The first aim of the FLOW initiative is to produce a proof-of-concept freight information exchange by the end of the summer.

“Supply chain stakeholders deserve reliable, predictable, and accurate information about goods movement and FLOW will test the idea that cooperation on foundational freight digital infrastructure is in the interest of both public and private parties. FLOW is designed to support businesses throughout the supply chain and improve accuracy of information from end-to-end for a more resilient supply chain,” said the White House.

In the opinion of the US Government, while different actors have made great strides in digitizing their own internal operations, they do not always exchange information with each other. This lack of information exchange, it is said, can cause delays as cargo moves from one part of the supply chain to another, driving up costs and increasing goods movement fragility.

With FLOW, the Biden Administration plans to bring companies together to problem solve these supply chain issues.

The Initial partners in FLOW are as follows:

  • Port of Long Beach
  • Port of Los Angeles
  • Georgia Ports Authority
  • MSC
  • Fenix Marine Terminal
  • Global Container Terminals
  • Albertsons
  • Gemini Shippers
  • Land O’ Lakes
  • Target
  • True Value
  • DCLI
  • FlexiVan
  • FedEx
  • Prologis
  • UPS
  • CH Robinson

Among the issues FLOW will address is ensuring early return dates are consistent across partners, measuring more accurate chassis availability and understanding aggregate dwell time throughout the supply chain.

The initiative is a voluntary, secure national exchange for freight information that’s available to participants who share data, and it is sustained by supply chain operational improvement.

A FLOW website will also be established with a view towards the initiative growing in size and scope with new participants.

Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

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