chapter  5
12 Pages

The Evolution of Fully Flexible Supply Chains

ByKate Hughes

This chapter focuses on the demand side because that is where the original signals that inform and guide us in the design of our enterprise supply chains come from. It talks about the reverse logistics that is a complex part of any operation, not least because it often involves the retailers or manufacturer's customers and suppliers - parties that are usually kept at arm's length. The chapter explains the material and packaging used and on increasing the options for recycling, reuse or refurbishment and on reducing the use of hazardous material. It describes that many of the activities practiced on the supply side have been taking place in a relative vacuum, with little direct reference to demand-side customer buying patterns. The whole area of supply-side sourcing is coming back into focus once again as the world reels from the impact of the financial services melt-down on the real economy.