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Kinks in the Global Supply Chain

Posted March 17, 2011  |  written by  |  About InkHead.com

Last week, I made a post about the rising price of gas, and since then, the average price of gas in the United States has risen another nickel. According to experts, prices are expected to continue their ascent, especially if the political turmoil in the Middle East persists. Add to that the fact that Japan will have to rely more heavily on fossil fuels because of the problems with their nuclear power facilities, and we could see prices go well above $4. Many places are already seeing prices over $4; prices in Georgia have thankfully stayed around $3.50 so far.

Gas isn’t the only commodity that has risen in price, either. Food prices have also steadily gone up, mainly due to a particularly harsh winter and rising transportation costs. The harsh winter has affected other crops as well, such as cotton.

Cotton Prices on the Rise

Cotton Prices Rising

According to an article appearing at ASI Central recently, cotton prices have been on the rise since last year, as demand for the fabric in countries such as China increases. In fact, current prices on cotton are “more than double…compared to this time last year.” The United States has responded to the increase in demand by stepping up its production of cotton, but that hasn’t stopped prices on raw cotton from climbing.

While we here at InkHead do everything we can to keep from rising costs on commodities such as gasoline and oil from trickling down to the customers, it may occasionally happen. If the cost of cotton is too high for you, think about going with promotional apparel made from synthetic materials. If you must have cotton, consider going with white instead of a colored fabric.

Limited USB Supplies in Japan

Unlike cotton, where an increase in demand has driven up costs, USB drives and other flash memory devices have risen in price due to a decrease in supply. In the wake of the record earthquake that devastated Japan last week, many Japanese countries have seen their production capacity severely limited, and as a result, supply on technology items has been limited.

Again, we’ll do everything in our power to keep from the price on our custom USB accessories from going up for our customers, but it’s possible that you may seen an increased price in the coming months. We’ll work with our suppliers to reach the lowest price we possibly can.

3/21/11 UPDATE: Custom Flash Drives, Imprinted MP3 Players, and Personalized Digital Photo Frames now display a “Please call for pricing” message on our site instead of quantity ranges and pricing. Please contact us for the product in question so that we may check stock and get a quote on any order for a memory product. We’ll keep you posted of any updates/changes to this situation.

The Bottom Line

Because we are constantly negotiating better prices with our suppliers, InkHead is able to provide some of the lowest prices in the industry on promotional items. Sometimes, though, price increases are unavoidable, especially during times of natural disasters or political and economic uncertainty.

Finally, the people of Japan continue to suffer as a result of the earthquake. Please consider donating to the Red Cross at http://www.redcross.org/ and help them rebuild their country.

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