Supply chain issues have led to shortages of pet food and Christmas trees to toilet paper and baby gear. Major retailers, such as Walmart and Home Depot, have been able to charter private cargo ships to keep their shelves stocked. In one extreme case, the maker of Beanie Babies chartered more than 150 flights from China to bring the stuffed toys to the U.S. and bypass port congestion. But those are expensive solutions that smaller businesses can’t always afford. 

To ensure they have enough product to satisfy customers, smaller companies have had to get creative by cutting out delays where they can. In some cases, that has meant going to China to pick up orders directly from the factory. In others, it has led businesses to open up their own warehouses in the U.S. to bypass the congestion at the ports in California.

Pish Posh Baby, an online baby gear store with a brick-and-mortar location in New Jersey, used to occasionally pick up…

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