Friday, September 22, 2023

Proof That the Supply Chain Crisis Affects Everyone

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If you’re one of those people who avoids the news like the plague, you may not have heard about the global supply chain crisis. I can assure you that it has impacted every single one of us. You might be wondering, “What does the supply chain even mean?” I am going to share below how companies are sneaking in extra fees to you, the consumer, without you even knowing it.

What is the Supply Chain?

In simple terms, the supply chain is the entire process of making and selling commercial goods, including every stage from the supply of materials and the manufacture of the goods through to their distribution and sale. It’s the making and distribution of goods including delivery of products.

Supply Chain Surcharge

I stopped in my local Sherwin-Williams to pick up a gallon of paint for my bedroom. It’s basically all I can afford to buy at a time because the paint is literally like GOLD, but it’s worth it! The paint was on sale for $10 off, but it still cost me $70 for one gallon. 

I am painting my entire house myself, so buying one gallon at a time and spreading the project out works for me. I’ve used paint from Lowe’s, and it just isn’t the same (even the Sherwin-Williams branded paint from Lowe’s). SW paint is thick and creamy, and it is wipeable and matte. With Sherwin-Williams paints, you don’t have to deal with drips from the roller while moving around the room.

I looked down at my receipt as I was walking out the door of my local Sherwin-Williams store, and I noticed a 4% supply chain surcharge. Folks, this is basically an extra tax on top of the sales tax we are already paying!!! 

Sherwin Williams Supply Chain Surcharge

This doesn’t just affect consumers. I wonder how many contractors check their receipts? How many contractors have bid on jobs without realizing that they have an additional 4% fee to account for in their expenses?

Other Supply Chain Issues to Consider

Supply Chain Shipments – Lost at Sea?

I ordered spirit wear for my son’s football season – clothing for my family to wear to his games as my husband and I both coached his 10u football team. We ordered through our school’s spirit shop, and I thought we would be supporting a local business.

Turns out, our items took two months to print and ship, and the season was almost over before we received them. We joked that they were “stuck on a ship somewhere in the ocean”, but it’s very frustrating, to say the least.

Consider where your goods are coming from and buy American-made products. Take it a step further and buy from a local business in your hometown or state. 

Towards the end of the season, before I received my order, we found a local business who created a shirt for me to wear to my son’s games. 

I've Got Your Six Football Shirt Gulf Breeze Dolphins

Vox put out a really great article detailing how ships are stuck at the dock, slowing down distribution. 

Labor Shortages

It’s safe to say that every single industry is short staffed. When President Biden started handing out money like candy to unemployed, it kept people from wanting to seek employment.

Companies raised their minimum wages, and my own 16 year old daughter was able to find work at Dairy Queen earning $14 per hour. 

Unfortunately, to offset the impact of paying employees higher wages, we consumers have to pay $9.50 for a single cheeseburger meal at a fast food restaurant. 

Delivery companies can’t find enough truck drivers to deliver goods. I ordered something from Amazon, and it just stopped tracking in Houston, Texas. I’m 99% certain that someone stole my dang package.

This is our new normal. Nothing is changing anytime soon. So what’s the best recourse?

Shop Local

Keep your money in your community if possible. Of course there are some items I still order online, but this year I am intentionally looking for more gifts from Florida-based businesses, specifically, those in my town of Gulf Breeze. 

If the lockdown taught me anything, it was that we need to get out more and experience more, and what better way to do that than to buy gift certificates for fishing excursions or boat rentals from my buddy Kirk at Keysailing?

I’m looking at handcrafted soaps, made here in Gulf Breeze by local artists, sold at Pizzaz.

My girlfriend Jen at Jen’s Designer Deals started hosting Botox® parties where guests can shop her boutique and sip a glass of wine while they wait to see the doctor for Botox® or Dysport® injections. She partnered with Emerald Coast Med Spa, and these parties have been a great way to keep business strong in the midst of the pandemic.

Your Vote Matters

I don’t want to get too political, but I will say this. Your vote matters. When you’re paying increased prices at the gas pumps or paying a “surcharge” for supply chain or labor shortage or whatever they want to label it, remember that who we have leading our States and our Country directly affects us. 

Florida is thriving while most of the rest of the Country is struggling. There’s a huge difference in leadership, and it shows.

The supply chain crisis is a direct result of lack of leadership and response to the pandemic from our current President. Notice I didn’t say it’s the pandemic’s fault, because it’s not.


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