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Supply chain reactions

Hannah Whittaker

Supply Management  

12 February 2013


PA’s Justin Hughes, supply chain expert, is quoted in an article in Supply Management. Justin shares his views on the recent horse-burger scandal and how this has been a lesson to companies on keeping a closer eye on suppliers to ensure that they do not step out of line.

Justin explains that these problems arise as a result of the ever-growing scale of supply chains: “When you get to the level of size and complexity that a lot of these supply chains are, there are a lot of things in tier two or three that you’re not aware of that can bite you. People tend to see these things and have to react, rather than having a plan in the first place.”

Justin goes on to explain that approved supplier lists are important, but they need to be kept up to date to remain valuable: “It’s not something you do once. You don’t put in an approved supplier list and then forget about it. I expect the number of companies who know their entire supply chain down to tier three or four are probably in the minority.

“Even for those that do, that information is only ever as good as the point at which it was taken. It can be out of date even within a couple of days, especially with complex global supply chains.”

Justin continues: “The message that we try to get across to clients is that the process has to be methodical, it has to be constant and it has to be based on a robust framework that continually looks at the information.”

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