The 3D printing industry has been changing almost every business sector. For international freight forwarders, this can be a big concern.
3D printers turn 3D images into tangible objects by creating them in layers. This technology has brought a huge impact on building things. But, this also affects on how and when individuals and companies receive goods.
Soon enough, manufactured goods will become compatible with 3D printing. So how will this affect international freight forwarders? With the volume of shipping and the number of logistics steps, just to name a few.
Reduction of Goods to Transport
The potential decline in goods to transport is making air freight forwarders vulnerable. With 3D printing, companies can able to manufacture goods within the country. This leaves almost no room for importing products. For example, huge quantities of consumer goods come from China. Any challenge to globalization can be a threat to air freight forwarders.
Because of its potential for on-demand, customizable capabilities, 3D printing can cause disruptive changes to international freight forwarders. This is no question, especially if the goods are from within the country.
Some 3D printers cost just a few hundred dollars. If 3D printing becomes more affordable, individuals can have easier access to this technology. This will hurt the freight industry even more.
Reduced Warehouse Requirements
International freight forwarders could shut down parts of their operations. They might remove some of their shipping procedures. These are not possible if the 3D printing becomes a part of people’s lives.
On-demand 3D print manufacturing takes away the need for investments in warehousing and inventory. The goods will be likely made to order. This can decline inventory levels, causing a reduction in warehousing requirements.
The goods can be manufactured at or near to the area of purchase or consumption. Even household-level production is near from possible. It only takes raw materials and software files to materialize objects.
The printer’s abundant use could also result in significant disruption of patents, taxes, and other government restrictions. The development can even lead to job losses for workers under international freight forwarders.
3D printing technology will not go anywhere. It is becoming common in today’s era. It’s only a matter of time individuals can own 3D printers at home and build whatever they want. And that they won’t need much of the services of freight and logistics companies anymore.
The impact of 3D printing technology poses a great challenge to international freight forwarders. The company leaders should work for their business to adapt to the technological innovations.