Containerization: An Influential Invention

Containerization: An Influential Invention

Today, the supply chain and logistics of many companies depend heavily on international shipping. The transport of goods to other countries is so vital that we can’t imagine a world without it. And it is all because of one simple invention: the shipping container.

Before Containers

People have been trading with each other across borders, nations, and seas for thousands of years. They used crates, barrels, and other methods to transport goods on ships. But it wasn’t efficient, safe, or even profitable. Cargo was brought to port in trucks and loaded onto vessels piece-by-piece. It meant that food barrels, tools, and everything else was packed tightly and secured, which took days, if not weeks, to do. That technique was called breakbulk cargo, which dates back to the time of the Phoenicians. 

The Container Revolution

Today, nearly everything found in the supermarket and stores were made in other countries then shipped there. Even the fresh food is grown or caught on the other side of the world. It was all due to containerization.

It all started in 1955, when Malcolm P. McLean, an American entrepreneur and the owner of the largest trucking company at the time, bought a steamship company with the idea of transporting entire truck trailers with the cargo inside.

However, the idea came to him that it would be simpler and faster to lift containers from the vehicle and load them on the ships without touching the cargo inside. That allowed the intermodalism system to be used, which meant that the same container could be transported from start to finish without directly handling the cargo inside. They can be moved between trucks, ships, and trains easily and without interruptions.

Containerization revolutionized trading and connected manufacturers straight to consumers. The shipping containers are now universal, and everyone across the world agrees on their size and safety standards. All Seas Shipping follows strict regulations and the latest safety standards to ensure the containers, and your cargo by extension, reach their destination undamaged and intact.

What used to take a week to load could now be done in the manner of hours, saving companies precious time and preserving the state of consumables longer.

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