Distriblition planning: an application of the transportation model in cottonseed distribution planning in the Uganda Lint Marketing Board
Okecho, William V J K
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Distribution has always been the main business activity concerned with the movement and storage of products. But distribution planning is quite a recent phenomenon for, it is only a few years ago that most organisations began to realise that big potential savings in terms of money and lost sales exist in this area. However, for its full benefits to be reaped, distribution planning must be carried out efficiently using the most modern technique. This thesis is therefore on distribution planning using the Transportation Model and the object is an important parastatal organisation in Uganda - The Uganda Lint Marketing Board. The Lint Marketing Board is the organisation statutorily entrusted with the marketing of the country's second most important foreign exchange earner (cotton) and the manufacturing of cottonseed oil for internal consumption and eventual export. The Board 1S thus duty bound to fulfill these important roles most efficiently 1n terms of costs in order to maximise earnings and benefits to the country as a whole. It must therefore take every cost saving measure in order to fulfill that duty, and sound planning shows the way. The thesis concentrates on one area, the edible oil manufacturing activity of the Board, which has of late contributed much to the Board's costs. In this activity the most costly item is the distribution of cottonseed, the main raw material. In cotton seed distribution, the main activity is transportation which has become increasingly important with the worsening state of the transportation system and the rising transportation rates. Thus it is the fundamental belief in this thesis that if the transportation activity could be handled through sound distribution planning, the cottonseed distribution would be less costly and the cost of the entire oil manufacturing operation would be greatly reduced thereby maximising the Board's earnings and benefit to the country as a whole. This sound planning can mainly be done by the use of the most modern technique and Operations Research offers it. The specific technique chosen to attain this endeavour is Linear Programming and the model applied is the Transportation Model. Because of the large size of data and the need to be accurate, this model is sol~ed using the computer. The results obtained give the distribution plan for the current 1976/77 season whose data was used. The Table of Contents presented below shows the major sections of the study.