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On December 1, 2017, Kamau commented on AM4U: Adidas Made For You :

This was a very interesting article Ketty – nice job! The evolution of a supply chain driven by the changing manufacturing process seems an inevitable part of the future. It will be interesting to see new organization structures emerge to support the change. I do agree with integrating IT across all levels of the org. That said, my current concern is the potential higher cost of custom manufacturing and if consumers value the customization enough to pay top dollar. Only time will tell!

On December 1, 2017, Kamau commented on Sephora: Combining Beauty and Sustainability :

Really insightful article Annie. This brings up the question of consumer demand and how it may or may not drive company changes. What percentage of Sephora’s buying customers truly demand sustainable products? Does Sephora have a responsibility to drive these changes even if they do not improve its bottom line? One way Sephora can begin to talk this transformation is too further vertically integrate, selling sustainably sourced raw materials to its own vendors.

On December 1, 2017, Kamau commented on Is Amazon Prime Driving Unrealistic Customer Expectations? :

Very interesting post Kim. I view Amazon more of a supply chain and logistics behemoth than a retailer. In fact, I believe their supply chain and ability to achieve 2 day delivery to most US locations is a compelling benefit in itself for suppliers to pay for the service. Furthermore, as they continue to invest in their supply chain operations I can see a near future in which they challenge UPS and FedEx as the largest 3PL company in the industry. A large concern I have is how their competition will be able to compete with them without the massive volume that a marketplace provides and the cost efficiency that said volume enables. I for one have absolutely changed my consumer habits since amazon and will not be going back.

On December 1, 2017, Kamau commented on Could a Srirachapocalype be on the Horizon? :

First off, we cannot ever change the recipe of Sriracha. Outside of the taco, this sauce is the single most important food revolution since sliced bread. That said, I agree that the lone supplier of peppers is unusually dangerous and unprotected from climate change risk in the future. My concern with utilizing multiple unaffiliated producers is that Tran may lose the cost savings he gains from the volume of his orders to his producer. One potential solution might be to work to create a pepper co-op in which multiple producers pool harvests each year and split the profits regardless. This would protect each of them and Sriracha from an environmental shortage while allowing the company to potentially maintain volume savings.

Great Work Sarah, incredibly compelling look on the real impacts of immediate labor shortages in agriculture and food. I worry that there will be no long term solution that results in maintaining the previous labor rates that LFP enjoyed. Additionally, I’d be concerned about the productivity vs. the costs LFP will see from part time high school workers in comparison to full time employees. I agree that moving into their own verification process is the safest option. That said, if they invest in this now, they may be able to monetize later with competitors or in future shortage situations at least guarantee maximum labor for themselves.

Great Article Chris. Clearly there are a number of obvious benefits to globalization (lower costs, ability to leverage country expertise, etc.) but its interesting to consider the longer term impact of exploiting those benefits. In this case, you site a larger gap of expertise development and education as well as domestic job loss. I would personally challenge the notion that it’s a companies responsibility to address these issues entirely, even if they are the largest.
Instead, I see these issues as the one of the major roles of government and regulatory bodies. Outside of the reality of how the US government and corporations influence each other, I would argue that government mandates should work to address the undesirable impacts of globalization in a way that doesn’t necessarily impact the current organizational operations. An example of this might be an education tax on apple that would go to other companies or institutions better aligned to educate America’s youth as opposed to having Apple vertically integrated to a point of ineffectiveness.