THE WHAT? America’s largest retailers have resorted to chartering their own ships in order to stock their shelves, according to a report published by The Wall Street Journal.
THE DETAILS Walmart, Costco, Target and Home Depot are all said to be paying for private cargo vessels in order to circumvent the global supply chain crisis.
The cost of charter, which is estimated to be roughly double that of freight containers, is being passed onto consumers via higher prices.
THE WHY? With labor shortages, port delays and the pandemic to contend with, the supply chain has become snarled, resulting in long delays and shortages. By using smaller ships, retailers are able to divert goods to quieter ports, ensuring time-dependent goods arrive by the all-important holiday season.