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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

ISM: A Well-Balanced, Solid End To The Year

January 3, 2014 9:40 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Articles | Comments

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in December for the seventh consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 55th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business.

China Manufacturing Indicator Weakens

January 2, 2014 9:12 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

An industry group, the China Federation of Logistics & Purchasing, said Wednesday its purchasing managers index for December declined to 51 from the previous month's 51.4. The measure is a 100-point scale on which numbers above 50 indicate increasing activity. "There still is downward pressure on economic growth," said economist Zhang Lijun in a statement that accompanied the report.

Wash. Governor Met With Airbus Executive

December 24, 2013 8:54 am | by Mike Baker, Associated Press | News | Comments

The private gathering occurred in October during an aerospace conference in Seattle, Inslee spokesman David Postman said on Monday after The Associated Press identified the meeting in records obtained under public records law. Postman said the governor talked with Barry Eccleston, the president and CEO of Airbus Americas, for about 20 minutes.

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Busting Slime For More Sustainable Ships

December 23, 2013 11:37 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Videos | Comments

AkzoNobel has released this rather fascinating video about how it has worked with Newcastle University to improve the sustainability and fuel economy of the world’s largest ships. Professor Mehmet Atlar, Professor of Ship Hydrodynamics at Newcastle University, says that he “hates the slime” that builds up on the hulls of these cargo shifts, because it increases the frictional drag as they move from one port to the next.

Setting the Table For Successful Supply Chain Management

December 20, 2013 11:02 am | by Michael Schmitt, Chief Marketing Officer, E2open | Articles | Comments

Over the past decade, I’ve watched as globalization, competition and digitalization have forever changed the business landscape. Throw in the fact that current, and potential, customers now have higher expectations, and more buying power, than ever before and you have very little room left for error when it comes to supply chain planning, process management and execution.

FDA Says It Will Delay Proposed Food Safety Rules

December 20, 2013 8:00 am | by Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press | News | Comments

The Food and Drug Administration will delay sweeping food safety rules proposed earlier this year and revise them to better accommodate farmers and businesses who would be affected. The FDA says it wants to make sure the rules are practical for farmers who have to abide by them.

Hayes To Expand La. Fabrication Plant, Hire 75

December 19, 2013 12:34 pm | News | Comments

The Hayes Cos. will invest $3 million to expand its metal fabrication plant. Hayes will hire another 75 workers in Pineville, La., paying them $45,000 a year, on average. The company says it's selling more to large clients, including Union Tank Car Co., General Electric Co. and OneSubsea.

Mercedes-Benz Opening Logistics Center In Ala.

December 18, 2013 8:55 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Mercedes-Benz is opening a new section at its plant in Tuscaloosa County. The German automaker is cutting the ribbon on a $70 million logistics center at its automotive factory in Vance on Wednesday afternoon. Gov. Robert Bentley is among the officials planning to attend the event.

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ISM: Economic Growth To Continue Through 2014

December 13, 2013 2:49 pm | by The Institute of Supply Chain Management (ISM) | News | Comments

The manufacturing sector is optimistic about growth in 2014, with revenues expected to increase in 16 manufacturing industries, and the non-manufacturing sector predicts that 14 of its industries will see higher revenues. Capital expenditures, a major driver in the U.S. economy, are expected to increase by 8 percent in the manufacturing sector.

Top 13 In 2013, #9: Textiles Tragedy In Bangladesh

December 11, 2013 1:00 pm | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

On April 24, the Rana Plaza, an eight-story commercial building in Savar collapsed, leaving hundreds dead and many more trapped within the rubble. Survivors said the building had cracked severely the day before, and that police had ordered an evacuation, but there was no action on the factory’s management.

Survey: 80 Pct. Don't See Supply Chain As Strategy Enabler

December 11, 2013 11:47 am | by Hitachi Consulting | News | Comments

Spanning nine European countries, Hitachi Consulting’s survey aimed to identify the extent to which supply chain management activities and priorities are aligned with a strategic transformation agenda. The survey found that a little over half of the respondents (55 percent) do not regard their business’s supply chain as a fundamental source of business value.

NRF: Retail Imports To Rise 1.8 Pct. In December

December 9, 2013 3:54 pm | by National Retail Federation | News | Comments

Import volume at the nation’s major retail container ports is expected to grow 1.8 percent in December over the same month last year, and the year should end with an increase of 2.3 percent over 2012, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.

Automotive Insights 2: Re-Shoring And The Southeast

December 9, 2013 10:27 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Videos | Comments

In the second part of Automotive Insights, sponsored by Omni-ID, we’re talking how re-shoring and the Southeast’s rise is changing American automaking. Over the last few years, the automotive industry has seen more foreign manufacturers, like Toyota, Honda, and Volkswagen, establishing manufacturing operations here in the U.S. What has been game-changing for many is their decision of where in the U.S. to manufacture.

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Incorporating Sustainability Across The Supply Chain

December 6, 2013 9:58 am | by Iuliana Nita, Global Marketing Manager, Food and Beverage, Process Systems Business Unit of Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics | Articles | Comments

Sustainability is a hot topic in the food and beverage industry. As manufacturers seek to reduce costs and maintain customer loyalty, implementing sustainable practices can help to achieve these aims while at the same time ensuring that companies are playing a responsible role in their industry and society in general.

Sustainability: A 3PL’s Role in Your Green Supply Chain

December 6, 2013 9:58 am | by Jamie Wyatt, COO, Linkex | Articles | Comments

The supply chain is getting greener and discussions about sustainability are cropping up in more calls and conferences than ever before. What this means for you is that the “green-ness” of your supply chain will soon be a deciding factor for your manufacturer and shipper partners as well as your other customers.

5 Quick Questions: Globalization And The Supply Chain

December 5, 2013 9:41 am | by Jeff Reinke, Editorial Director | Articles | Comments

Globalization has created both the opportunity and challenge of creating and balancing global, regional and local demand. The resulting demand volatility of that complex mix has pushed forecasting accuracy to its effective limits; and, therefore, is forcing greater execution agility to make up for planning’s shortcomings.

ISM: A Good Solid Month For Manufacturing

December 4, 2013 9:39 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Articles | Comments

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in November for the sixth consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 54th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business.

SE Mich. PMI: Economy Grows At Slower Rate In November

December 3, 2013 1:52 pm | by The Institute for Supply Management - Southeast Michigan | News | Comments

The Southeast Michigan Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) for November is 58.3, down from 63.1 in October. Despite a slow-down in the rate of growth, the three-month average for the economy registered a robust 60.4.  A PMI value above 50 generally suggests economic growth.

Tracking The Future Of Conflict Minerals

December 3, 2013 12:58 pm | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

These conflict minerals — cassiterite, wolframite, coltan and gold — are mined in the DRC by various rebel groups and those who, generally speaking, do not bind themselves to any threshold of human rights. Because minerals mined in these countries go through a complex network of middlemen in the region and in East Asian processing plant, the exact source of a particular batch of gold can be difficult, if not impossible, to find.

Automotive Insights 1: The Poster-Child Of American Manufacturing

December 2, 2013 11:21 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor, Manufacturing.net | Videos | Comments

In this inaugural episode of Automotive Insights, sponsored by Omni-ID, we're talking about the growing complexity within the American automotive landscape, from changes within the Big 3, to the revolution of battery-powered cars like the Tesla Model S, and the fact that an increasing amount of American-made cars are now emerging from the Southeastern states, like Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi.

SKorea To Start Talks On Joining US-Led Trade Pact

November 29, 2013 9:11 am | by Youkyung Lee, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

The finance ministry said in a statement that officials will explore the possibility of joining the Trans-Pacific Partnership through the preliminary negotiations. The move is a first step and doesn't commit South Korea to becoming part of the agreement but the trade ministry has been talking up its benefits for the economy.

Feds: Company To Pay Fine For Parts Price-Fixing

November 27, 2013 1:17 pm | News | Comments

The Justice Department says a Japanese auto parts maker has agreed to pay a $120 million fine as part of a plea agreement to settle a pair of price fixing schemes. The plea agreement and indictment filed in Toledo, Ohio, were finalized Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Justice.

U.S.: 3 Agree To Plead Guilty In Parts Price Fixing

November 22, 2013 7:56 am | News | Comments

Three executives in Japan's automotive parts industry have agreed to plead guilty to a price-fixing conspiracy and two more have been indicted in the U.S. investigation, the government said Thursday. The plea agreements filed in Detroit and the indictment filed in Toledo were announced Thursday by the U.S. Department of Justice.

Tyson To Drop Hog Supplier After Abuse Video

November 21, 2013 8:11 am | News | Comments

Mercy For Animals distributed images of farm workers striking pigs and slamming piglets onto a concrete floor. In one portion of the tape, a worker is shown throwing a bowling ball at a pig, striking it in the head. The animal rights group and Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson Foods identified the farm as West Coast Farms in Henryetta, Okla.

Survey: Manufacturers Struggle To Respond To Real-Time Peak Demands

November 20, 2013 10:32 am | by Capgemini | News | Comments

Despite growing consumer expectations for perfect order delivery and always-available inventory, the majority (83 percent) of U.S. supply chain managers say it is challenging to adequately plan for supply chain capacity to address peak requirements or timely fluctuations in demand, including during the holiday season.

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