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Awesome article, Jeff. Based on work that I did with Ford over the summer, the Asian market and particularly China is poised to see the largest growth in small cars and small/medium SUV models. This might be the true driver of Ford’s decision to shift or add production in China. However, I believe the company should do as they are and use this action in their argument to the Trump administration on how eliminating or modifying NAFTA in a negative way would impact Ford’s propensity to produce in the US. On a similar note, Ford recently announced that it would be importing the EcoSport (small crossover) from India [1]. Consumer demand is shifting toward smaller utility vehicles and as this happen it will place more pressure on Ford as these cars have lower price points and therefore lower margins – making production/labor cost an even more important factor. Moving forward, it will be interesting to see whether or not Trump “shoots the shot”.


On November 28, 2017, Nikhil commented on Ice, Cold Corona – Get it here for a 35% higher price! :

What I find most interesting about this is that the proposed medium term solutions (“[purchasing] more packaging materials from inside the U.S. instead of from Mexico and…[making] its glass bottles with more U.S. natural gas rather than rely on mostly Mexican natural gas as it does now”) is precisely the impact that the Trump administration wants. They want to influence companies to spend more and produce more in the United States. The option of passing on the potentially higher costs to the consumers via an increase in price of beer depends on competitive dynamics, price elasticity of demand, and the consumers tendency to switch beers. Can Constellation maintain it’s market share at higher prices? If not, then they will have to take on the increased COGS. A potential implication and necessary action is that Constellation work with US suppliers to reduce production cost.

On November 28, 2017, Nikhil commented on How HMG makes an (olive) oil and water relationship work :

Great article, Carolina. I didn’t realize that some of these European regions are experiencing such dramatic droughts and water constraints. Similar to the what wine makers are considering, it could be important for HMG to consider different geographies they could potentially buy farms in to produce olive oil. Obviously, this would probably generate a different quality of oil, but it could be a potential short term solution to effectively meeting demand at prices consumers are willing to pay. This is especially true given that HMG has already begun choosing “olive species that are particularly resilient in extreme weather conditions”.

The drip irrigation process definitely seems like a helpful step. One thing I wonder is if it would also be helpful to cover the ground/dirt in which the trees are planted with some sort of material that reduces evaporation much allows water to pass through when it rains. This, along with the drip irrigation pipes, could further help combat the water shortage.

On November 28, 2017, Nikhil commented on Fighting Malthus’s Prediction in the New Millennium :

Adam – I enjoyed reading this article and was intrigued by the notion that “the long-run [effects of food aid] may have significant negative impacts on developing the local markets…” This reminds me of the adage that says if you give a man a fish he will eat for a day, but if you teach him how to fish, he will be able to earn for a lifetime. However, it’s important to think about the short term trade-offs in lives saved or slightly improved by utilizing the overproduction and waste of food we seen in more developed countries. Furthermore, a question that came to mind is should we be considering teaching affected individuals other skills than farming to mitigate the risk of reduced arable land on their financial well-being.

While I agree that attacking this problem is important, there will presumably be a challenge convincing the leaders of developing economies to think about more sustainable practices when the US and Europe was already greatly benefited from fossil fuel use without much push back until now.

On November 28, 2017, Nikhil commented on Udacity and the evolving supply chain for highly technical labor :

I enjoyed reading this article and am energized to see how the highly technical labor market will change in the next two years. This has the potential to more effectively help traditionally under-served populations gain education that will allow them to pursue better economic opportunity.

Additionally, I’m curious about how this will impact the traditional four year engineering degree program. There are instances, for example the chemical engineering program at the University of Michigan, where the curriculum is highly theoretical and therefore true application based learning happens via internships. Will these programs ultimately replace four year degrees in certain fields or be treated more as a supplemental education? The answer to that question will probably depend on how employers needs and perceptions changes overtime.

It will be exciting to see how this plays out. I was surprised to read that some Goose products could be listed as “sold out” online – this seems like a huge miss, but reveals how far they have to go in improving their supply chain’s responsiveness.

A potential idea to consider is introducing mini-Canada Goose guide shops similar to what Bonobos or Warby Parker does. The goal would be to allow potential customers come into a shop (could even be a dedicated section of a retail store where Goose is sold) to try on different SKUs and then place an order via their phone or digitally via a dedicated employee. This would reduce the need for Goose to hold the inventory at the store and the customer could expect to receive their jacket in 2-4 days. Additionally, this would help Goose centralize it’s manufacturing and more effectively optimize it’s supply chain.