Monthly Archives: May 2013

Are European manufacturers globally competitive in making premium components or products ?

An article in the Financial Times (May 29, 2013) describes a collection of Italian manufacturers – Luxottica for eyewear, Sogefi for premium auto parts and Guala Closures for premium bottle caps that prevent counterfeiting. They compete globally to make premium … Continue reading

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US forests to fuel European power plants – a green supply chain ?

An article in the Wall Street Journal (May 28, 2013) describes exports of US forest generated pellets to replace coal in European power plants as Europe cuts down on fossil fuel use and tries to decrease emissions of carbon dioxide. … Continue reading

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The emerging “internet of things” and opportunities

An article in WIRED magazine (June 2013) describes the emerging internet enabled devices across homes, factories, cities etc. They predict three stages – Stage 1 links devices to the internet, Stage 2 enables conditional actions (If-Then actions) between pairs of … Continue reading

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Decreasing the $290 billion cost of poor drug adherence

A report in the Wall street Journal (May 21, 2013) quotes a $290 billion cost estimated by the New England Health Institute due to poor drug regimen adherence by 33% to 50% of the patients, thus increasing hospital or other … Continue reading

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Vertical integration in the US global pharmacy supply chain and impact

An article in the Wall Street Journal (May 21, 2013) describes an alliance between Walgreens, Alliance Boots and AmerisourceBergen to consolidate their global purchasing of generic and branded pharmaceuticals and sell them through their US Walgreens retail stores and AllianceBoots … Continue reading

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Sustainable metrics at REI and associated insights

An article by Kevin Hagen (http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/articles/what-i-learned-about-sustainability-rei-part-2-metrics-over-intuition?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=businessweekly&utm_campaign=may20) describes REI’s tracking of greenhouse gas emissions in 2011. The company realized that while 10 % of these emissions were caused by transportation of its products, 15 % were the result of employee commutes … Continue reading

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Cadmium in Chinese rice – what should a consumer do ?

An article in the New York Times (May 20, 2013) describes the problem of ‘cadmium rice” – a report that claims that 44 % of the rice tested had twice the level of cadmium (0.4 milligrams per kilogram) as considered … Continue reading

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Can outsourced manufacturing compliance to agreements be crowdsourced ?

An article in Bloombergbusinessweek (May 20, 2013) describes companies such as LaborVoices and LaborLink that permit employees at manufacturing plants abroad to call in anonymously to report about working conditions. The companies then follow up to verify complaints and thus … Continue reading

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The economics of the $6.75 shirt in Bangladesh

In an article in the Wall Street Journal (May 16, 2013), a manufacturer, Rubana Haq, describes the producer margins in a $6.75 shirt he manufactures. He claims that it costs $4.75 to buy the cotton cloth and $1 for the … Continue reading

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Software to track detailed flows from prescriptions to drug usage at the patient level

An article in the New York Times (May 16,2013) describes software that uses insurance records, claims etc to track individual drug prescriptions from doctors to patients to pharmacies, including refills, albeit without patient identifiers. But the data does include details … Continue reading

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