May 17, 2020

Buying local might not be positive for the dairy supply chain

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Environment
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2 min
Buying local might not be positive for the dairy supply chain
Buying local works well for individual businesses as they keep money in the local economy. However, new research conducted by Chuck Nicholson of the Pen...

Buying local works well for individual businesses as they keep money in the local economy. However, new research conducted by Chuck Nicholson of the Penn State Smeal College of Business suggests that buying local isn’t always positive for the dairy supply chain.

Nicholson along with researchers from Cornell University found that if supply chains for fluid milk products were reconfigured so milk consumed in those states was also produced there, it would increase the total distance travelled by the products as well as supply chain costs and emissions.

The study concluded that additional employment and economic activity in the region would be modest at best.

Nicholson said: "When considered as a system based on a limited resource like farm milk that can be allocated to the manufacture of different dairy products, we find that localizing food systems can have unexpected impacts. The 'global' effects of scaled-up 'localisation' can be counterintuitive."

The study found that supply chain reconfiguration to support regional consumption of milk in the north east would increase total distances travelled by dairy products by 7% to 15%, with similar impacts on emissions. Total supply chain costs would increase 1% to 2% for the region.

Reconfiguration would generate about four new jobs in the north east region and about $1 million per month in additional economic activity. However, the effects of localising milk in the north east were not limited to that region. The average distance travelled by other dairy products could increase up to 150 miles in the south eastern US as a result of changes in milk allocation due to the local reconfiguration.

Nicholson said: "Our study does not indicate that local food is a bad idea, but it suggests that careful analysis of food systems may be required to achieve the desired economic, social, and environmental objectives.”

This comes from the study recently published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology.

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Aug 5, 2021

Accenture Acquires SCM Software Firm Blue Horseshoe

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2 min
Accenture acquires supply chain management specialist Blue Horseshoe, expanding the scale and capabilities of its Supply Chain & Operations group

Accenture has announced its acquisition of Blue Horseshoe, a US-based supply chain management software provider and consultancy firm. 

Upon completion, Blue Horseshoe’s 349 professionals will join Accenture’s Supply Chain & Operations group, expanding the professional services group’s capabilities to create more interconnected and resilient supply chains for clients. 

“To be competitive, companies need to transform their supply chains to deliver the innovative and hyper-personalised products, services and experiences that are in high demand—and fulfilment is core to that transformation,” said Renato Scaff, Accenture’s Supply Chain & Operations North America lead. “Blue Horseshoe’s deep fulfilment consulting experience and methodologies support Accenture’s vision for building customer-centric, resilient and responsible supply chains that benefit people, society and the planet.”

Who are Blue Horseshoe? 

  • Founded: 2001
  • CEO: Chris Cason
  • Employees: 349
  • Offices: 4 in USA, 1 in Amsterdam, 1 in Estonia
  • Key customers: Lids, Pabst Brewing Co., Half Price Books, Britax, Major Brands


Founded in 2001 in Indiana, USA, Blue Horseshoe now operates from six offices across the US and Europe. The company provides cloud-based solutions for supply chain management, ERP, warehouse management and transportation management systems, including its own Supply Chain Cloud platform, as well as Oracle NetSuite and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Supply Chain Management as a Microsoft Inner Circle Partner. 


Blue Horseshoe specialises in fulfilment and distribution solutions, with expertise in the food and beverage, consumer packaged goods, and retail distribution industries. Over the past 20 years, the company has improved around 700 supply chains, including those of leading companies such as fashion retailer Lids, cosmetics company Regis Corporation, Pabst Brewing Co., and family-owned bookstore chain Half Price Books. 

“For two decades, we’ve worked with clients to build connectedness, efficiency and automation across their enterprise and supply chain operations,” said Chris Cason, CEO, Blue Horseshoe. “As part of Accenture, we will bring increased scale and combined expertise to help clients put in place next generation supply chain and fulfillment strategies that meet customer expectations and support business growth.”

Accenture's acquisition of Blue Horseshoe is subject to customary closing conditions.

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