The British Standards Institution (BSI) has observed a significant number of criminal organisations masquerading as legitimate warehousing, transport or distribution companies over the past year.
Criminal activity was discovered in their annual Supply Chain Risk Insights Report which is set to impact a system already plagued by Covid-related driver shortages.
Harold Pradal, Chief Commercial Officer at BSI, said: “Supply chain threats will remain one of the most serious issues global businesses will face in 2022.
“Widespread product shortages and scarcely qualified operators, including lorry-drivers, are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the ongoing global supply chain crisis.
“With manufacturers and freight companies already spending much effort to address these issues, organizations along the supply chain increasingly fall vulnerable to a convergence of additional threats.
“Those include more frequent and damaging natural disasters, and more opportunistic criminal cartels.
“Unless these threats are addressed holistically and quickly by supply chain leaders, consumers are likely to see current challenges continue and worsen over time.”
The BSI has observed that the quantities of cocaine seizures in Europe increased steadily in 2020 and 2021.
They are expected to continue further in 2022.
Coronavirus has also forced up shipping costs between the east and the west by more than 650 percent.
According to The Sun, in September 2021 a Costa Rican crime gang was caught trying to smuggle cocaine from a port in the South American country into Donegal, Ireland, disguised in a container of banana pulp.
A similar incident in Ukraine saw police arrest two criminals who posed as licensed cargo carriers.
They took possession of goods worth over £137,000.
Jim Yarbrough, BSI’s global intelligence program manager, also spoke about the impact of the climate on delays of shipment.
He said: “As we continue to manage a multitude of challenges, including Covid, climate change and natural disasters, we have seen the convergence of impacts on organizations and the global community. This illustrates the broad-brush consequences of disruptions and threats to our supply chains and the importance of not underestimating their complexities.”
“To protect the integrity of this vital part of our global way of life, business leaders must stay ahead of the latest trends that threaten to disrupt it. We’ve published a supply chain risk report every year since 2013, but there has never been a more vital time for business leaders and decision-makers to take note.”