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Why transport is an important aspect of your product and packaging development

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Corné van de Voort
Key Account Manager
More articles by Corné van de Voort

It pays off to think about transport at an early stage

When we start developing a packaging, we ask a lot of questions at Faes. This is important, because it concerns custom-made work. Of course your wishes, requirements and the specifications of the product are important. But we look further than that, because it’s not only about the packaging of the product as such but also about its processing in the entire supply chain. Therefore, the method of transport also deserves attention at the start of the process in order to come to the perfect customised case or box.

Your complete supply chain

Factors such as the fragility of your product, the optimal layout of your case interior, compactness, weight and other practical properties are probably all familiar to you. But what few people realise is that transport is also an important aspect when designing the ideal customised case or box. Packaging and transport are often only discussed when the product development phase is completed. A logical thought, because that is after all the chronological order of the process. But by involving these steps earlier in your process, you can optimise your product development and supply chain as a whole. The consultants of Faes are happy to support you in this.

To give you an idea…

Transport options can influence the packaging design and the packaging in return can even influence the product development. Within Faes we work closely together as departments, so that we can find the best packaging solution for you in different areas. At the bottom of this article you can read an example of a challenge where cooperation has led to an advice where the customer benefited greatly.

What requirements and wishes do you have regarding transport?

Air freight, sea freight, transport by truck, train or courier, there are hundreds of transport service providers. The possibilities are endless, so which one is right for your company and product? It depends on what is determining; delivery speed or cost saving? Do you send hundreds of shipments to the other side of the world every year? Then the transport method and associated packaging solution can make all the difference. By thinking about this at an early stage, you have more control over your supply chain and therefore also over your costs.

The destination of your shipment

Of course, the destination of your shipment also influences the choice for the form of transport. If, for example, you are sending a parcel or pallet to the other side of the world, you are dependent on air or sea freight. There are many differences between these forms of transport and various logistics providers in terms of efficiency, speed and costs. Especially with long distances (and high costs), it is advisable to check whether your way of packing can be smarter or more compact. We will be happy to help you with this.

If you opt for inexpensive, flexible and fast: road transport

Depending on the destination and your wishes regarding the delivery time, road transport is in many cases the most favourable option to locations within Europe. The costs are considerably lower than those for air freight. In addition, delivery within Europe usually takes place within a few days and changes can often be made at the last minute. For deliveries to further (overseas) destinations, road transport alone is not an option, but sea and air freight naturally involve road transport as well. This may also include transport by goods train.

Check with your carrier what the costs, conditions and maximum dimensions are for your shipments. Our advisers will be happy to support you in this, in cooperation with our logistics department. 

Tip from Corné

Fast delivery worldwide with air freight

Air freight is the fastest way to transport your goods to the other side of the world. The costs for air transport depend on: the country of origin and the destination, the type of goods, the desired arrival date (ETA) and the ‘payload’. In addition, you should take into account that each carrier has different size restrictions.

What is ‘paying weight’?

To calculate the tariff for air transport, carriers use either the weight or the volume weight. The weight is the number of kilos of the shipment, the volume weight is calculated by multiplying the number of cubic metres (length x width x height) by 166.67. With sea freight (LCL), this calculation is based on a different ratio, namely 1 cubic metre = 1,000 kg. For road transport, 1m3 (cbm) = 333 kilo is used. If the volume weight is higher than the actual number of kilos, the rate is based on this. If the volume weight is lower than the actual number of kilos, the rate will be based on this.

Cargo or passenger flight?

A good solution if both cost and speed of delivery are important to you is to have your shipment transported in the hold of a passenger aircraft. This is simply more economical because airlines make the remaining cargo space available, so that it is used optimally. In addition, the door-to-door delivery time of your shipment is in most cases shorter because passenger planes land at almost all airports, whereas cargo planes shuttle between import and export hotspots. However, a pallet (including goods) that is transported in the hold of a passenger aircraft may only be a maximum of 160 cm high. So in many cases, it pays to take a close look at your packaging dimensions.

Affordable far away: ocean freight

Sea freight is a suitable shipping method if you want to send your products to distant destinations as economically as possible. This applies to pallets, but there are also transport companies that offer sea freight for packages. That’s a no-brainer, you might think. But when you choose sea freight, you have to take into account a longer delivery time. Depending on the destination and the customs procedures in the destination country, transport can take several weeks.

Our Supply Chain Manager on packaging and shipping advice

John Lavrijsen

John Lavrijsen, Supply Chain Manager at Faes, uses an example to show how our transport department contributes to finding the best total solution for our customers.

“One of the account managers said that his customer wanted to ship blue EPP (Expanded Polypropylene) crates by sea freight to South Africa, Abu Dhabi and Turkey. My colleague wanted to find out the most efficient way to ship these packages for the customer.

We entered the order into the StackAssist software, from which we then concluded that the shipment was too large (20 pallets) for a full 20ft container, but that we could not completely fill a 40ft container with it. My advice was to adjust the order volume to the capacity of a full container (FCL), as this would give the customer an economy of scale (cost per package) as they regularly send the products in question to these consignors. 

Moreover, the alternative was a ‘mixed container’ (LCL), where the pallets are grouped together with other shipments; loaded by an external party. This increases the risk of damage. Opting for a full container, and also loading in loose packages (without pallets), gives the customer a considerable cost saving.”

Do you want the best transport packaging and to optimise your logistics chain?

Of course, my colleagues at Faes and I are happy to help. Read more about StackAssist here or leave your question in the form below. You can also contact us directly.

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    Wooden pallets, crates or boxes in every possible size. Strong, functional and practical. Our wooden packaging is mainly used for one-way transport.
    By using our transport service, you save time, space and therefore costs. We are happy to help you think about more efficient transport.
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    With our logistics services, we will help you meet all your packaging challenges!
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