As the seasons change, we can count on cooler temperatures and falling leaves, but will the usual fall freight patterns hold true? It’s a timely question that Crete Carrier Corporation President and COO Tim Aschoff addressed during a recent interview with Dave Nemo on Sirius XM’s Road Dog Trucking.
“The consumer and how they’re spending is very important to our customers and to our economy as a whole. What’s been really interesting is as we’ve gone through 2023 is it’s been hard for anybody to really look out too far and predict what was going to happen,” said Aschoff.
Aschoff says consumer spending patterns shifted from goods to services earlier this year. More people wanted to travel and spend money on experiences after those had been curtailed during the pandemic. Now customers tell him there’s a bit of a shift back. “We haul a lot of food. And a lot of our food producers, are starting to see that shift now, of spending more for cooking in the home,” said Aschoff.
Meanwhile, the overall economy is sending mixed signals. Prices for fuel and food remain high, while employment is strong, and predictions of a recession have diminished. “So, as we talk to our customers, they’re happy to see more eating at home, seeing school starting and some of those patterns come into place. But they’re still really kind of cloudy on what’s going to come in the coming months,” said Aschoff.
The interview also included discussions about implementing technology designed to streamline interactions between drivers and customers, and changes in supply chains.
Listen to the full interview on our SoundCloud page.