Containerization: Cargo and Traditional Bulk Transport

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1. What is containerization and how did the innovative use of containers transform the distribution of goods?

The traditional way of transporting goods from one place to another was highly labor intensive and goods were in individual crates of different sizes and shapes and they had to be manually lifted and stowed in the holds of ships. As the time passed by, the concept of containerization emerged. Basically, Containerization is an inter-modal system of transporting the general cargo or product in lots which are too small for the traditional bulk transport system, using ISO standard containers that can be loaded and sealed intact onto container ships, railroad cars, planes, and trucks. The concept of containerization is considered as the key innovation in the field of logistics which has revolutionized freight handling in the twentieth century. Containerization reduces time in transit, the inventory costs and increases reliability. Such benefits are forcing the industry to make it more favorable in terms of cost, flexibility and speed. As the Internet and other new technologies and advancements are developing, it is expected to bring more innovations which will further simplify the tasks of logistics.

The innovative use of containerization has transformed the distribution of goods in following ways: * Goods in lots which are too small for the traditional bulk transport can be moved using containers * It is best option for high-value and delicate cargo as it provides safety from human and natural factors * As containers are moved intact, substantial amount of time and labor cost is saved which would otherwise have incurred in loading and unloading goods * It prevents poor handling of goods that results from bulk transport systems * Containers can act as mode of storage anywhere along the transport route * Container ships provide regular service to overseas ports, thus it minimizes the waiting time * It reduces the transit time

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