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Supply chain expert details challenges during pandemic— Fuller Speed Ahead (with video)

FreightWaves CEO Craig Fuller talks supply chain capabilities with Wolfgang Lehmacher

From running his own public speaking campaign, serving on multiple corporate boards and working through executive management, Wolfgang Lehmacher is a pretty busy guy. 

He took time out of his schedule to sit down with FreightWaves CEO Craig Fuller to discuss all things supply chain on this episode of Fuller Speed Ahead. 

Fuller Speed Ahead with Wolfgang Lehmacher

Fuller got straight into it, asking how Lehmacher thinks the supply chain has fared during the COVID-19 crisis. 

Lehmacher said the macro supply chain overall has handled the pandemic very well considering the challenges that were thrown at it. He said consumer spending has helped keep the wheels turning on the economy, but there is always room for improvement.

The competition between the private sector and the government for solutions to the pandemic has been tight and Lehmacher thinks that most global governments have done a decent job responding to the challenges. 

However, he believes there was not enough time to think of creative solutions for COVID mitigation, so most governments resorted to stringent travel bans and lockdowns. 

The governments focused on “people not pallets,” and that was one of the reasons the supply chain struggled, Lehmacher said.  

Fuller asked if we will start seeing more government investment in the supply chain following the COVID-19 crisis. Lehmacher said he thinks that the private sector will still hold most of the weight in supporting the supply chain. 

He thinks governing bodies may put into place more regulations to “fix what the governments think need to be fixed” and that vaccine management will play a significant role in government overreach of the supply chain. 

When asked his thoughts on stimulus funding, Lehmacher said consumers have spent money very differently than expected during the pandemic and that has created an increased amount of stress on the freight industry. 

That stress is something he expects to continue as COVID-19 vaccines are rolled out and distributed globally. 

Lehmacher said vaccine distribution will be broken into two groups — those that have the capacity to distribute effectively and those that don’t. Distribution will require the cooperation of nations globally to work in a sustainable way, he said.

You can find more Fuller Speed Ahead recaps and recaps for all our shows here.

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