Andrés Birlain
Expert Contributor

How Much is Known About the Material Handling Industry in Mexico?

By Andrés Birlain | Tue, 10/12/2021 - 09:09

We are an industrial country. Throughout the development of the Mexican industry, which opened its first manufacturing settlements in 1519 with the arrival of the Spaniards, we have seen countless advances in manufacturing, explotation of primary resources and in consequence, the construction of logistics systems designed for the exchange of assets across the country.

The logistics sector was built to support our industries and meet their communication needs, first required for the domestic market and later for the international market, with the opening of several free trade agreements, mainly involving the US and the EU.

In this economic evolution, we had to first pursue massification and representation as a market. Five hundred years later, the results are not negligible. Just look at some interesting data: so far in the century, the manufacturing industry represents between 15 percent and 18 percent of Mexico’s GDP. There are roughly 600,000 facilities focused on manufacturing in the country, and 7 million Mexicans work in the industry, of which 37 percent are women.

In brief, there has certainly been development, including the industry’s outreach and penetration. In fact, there are companies in the food and beverage sector with a penetration rate of 99.9 percent of the Mexican population.

The efforts to establish ourselves as a Mexican industry and grow our commercial reach without really worrying about operational efficiency, in addition to overlooking the logistics sector as an important component, has not helped in the promotion of the Material Handling, an industry that complements logistics activities and serves as an excellent source to optimize supply chains and increase the profitability of operations.

But the times are changing. The COVID-19 pandemic has provided lessons that we must bear in mind to lead a new stage of industrial transformation, where it becomes crucial to look inside our own operations to achieve the success and differentiation of our products, and become our customers’ first choice just because we have built an ecosystem to “play better”, is a cultural thing.

This is when the importance of the Materials Handling Industry starts making sense for those industrial actors belonging to the primary, secondary, tertiary and quaternary sectors of the economy, who are willing to challenge their operational status quo and lead their companies toward a new way of doing logistics.

With regard to the service sector and industrial supply, we need to place our value offer outside of the goods exchange mentality and realize that our participation is vital in pursuing transformation, ensuring that we are recognized as an industry (together) and as a sector that have a direct positive impact on the Mexican economy.

In short, it is not only about logistics, or moving from one point to another. In the Material Handling Industry, you can find thousands of ways to operate at the peak of logistics efficiency. It is time to defy pallets, plastic wraps, forklifts, racks and conveyor belts; as they are not the only tools we can work with.

To learn more about the material handling industry click on the following video

Photo by:   Andrés Birlain