Physical Distribution

  • Eugene L. Magad
  • John M. Amos
Part of the Chapman & Hall Materials Management/Logistics Series book series (COMMS)


Physical distribution, often referred to as distribution, is the materials/logistics management subfunction most closely related to finished goods. In the context of total materials/logistics management, physical distribution is defined as all activities related to finished goods, starting with their receipt from the company’s manufacturing facility and/or from a supplier, and concluding with the delivery to a customer. Coyle, Bardi, and Cavinato1 define physical distribution as “the movement and storage functions associated with finished goods from manufacturing plants to warehouses and to customers.” This vital subfunction may include the following activities: receiving, storage, materials handling, order assembly/picking, packaging, shipping, and transportation.


Customer Service Material Handling Finished Good Inventory Control Transportation Mode 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Chapman & Hall 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eugene L. Magad
    • 1
  • John M. Amos
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Materials/Logistics ManagementWilliam Rainey Harper CollegeUSA
  2. 2.Industrial and Manufacturing Systems EngineeringKansas State UniversityUSA
  3. 3.Engineering ManagementUniversity of Missouri-RollaUSA

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