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I have an application that manages input/delivery/unloading of goods (from truck) on specific warehouse. There is user role of "supplier" for clients that supply and deliver this goods. There is also generic role of "carrier", currently used with same meaning as "supplier". Now we want to extend application with new type of warehouse where goods are loaded on truck and sent, but I do not have a good translation for the role of carrier that is taking this goods away.

In local language (Slovak) terminology is clear:

  • "dodávateľ" - supplier, someone who deliver goods
  • "dopravca" - carrier, someone who transport goods, either in or out
  • "odberateľ" - ???, someone who takes goods away

I googled the translation for "odberateľ" but google translate offers:

  • customer - this has generic meaning like with carrier but I want specific meaning
  • purchaser - this is not correct since our carrier does not buy goods (at least not directly), he just takes them away
  • subscriber - while literal and most correct translation in other cases, this is related to subscription so I do not see how it would fit ( but maybe my view is skewed because of social networks and meaning of subscriber in software development)
  • buyer - same as purchaser
  • client - same as customer

I also tried translation for "odvoz" (noun for carrying goods away):

  • transport - generic
  • removal - incorrect meaning in our case
  • disposal - incorrect meaning in our case

Closest I got is to use the word "exporter", but that is clearly connected with "importer" instead of "supplier" and has some connotations to foreign trade, while we send goods to both local and foreign clients.

While searching on EL&U I also found "consumer", but it has no carrier connotation as I see it (and again my view may be skewed because of meaning in software development).

Is there common word for role of carrier (opposite for supplier) that only takes goods away, better than "consumer/exporter"? Or is usage of consumer/exporter in this case valid?

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  • I thought of dispatcher, but that seems to be used of a person who sends out vehicles (such as ambulances) rather than goods. I can't think of a word for someone who only takes goods away, since a carrier would do both. Dec 9, 2020 at 9:18
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    receiver would probably be the most direct translation. I presume you only care for the part facing your warehouse, ie. you don't care that the receiver in question actually ships the goods further? Dec 9, 2020 at 10:07

2 Answers 2

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It sounds like what you want is "shipper".

"Exporter" would be a company that makes its money buying goods and selling them in remote locations; in the US, we only call a company an exporter if it is selling the goods outside the country.

"Receiver" could be anyone receiving the goods, it wouldn't have to be the purchaser, and in fact "receiver" is not often used out of a shipping context.

"Shipper" is a company that makes its money by accepting fees for transporting goods from one place to another. They could be bringing the goods to you or taking goods you have elsewhere. They don't buy the goods; they take containers of goods, load them onto trucks or something, and deliver them to another place.

EDIT: You seem to want someone who takes goods away but doesn't bring them -- in US English, I don't know that we have a specific word for this. The companies that are taking goods away are bringing them to somewhere else, so it's the same company. If we wanted to distinguish between the shipper that brought us something and the shipper that is taking something away, we would qualify 'shipper', not use a different word.

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I think you are looking for "distributor".

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