How the recent shipping disruption is affecting businesses in the UK

Unforeseen circumstances have caused a global scarcity of shipping containers, which has had a cascading impact throughout the supply chain, disrupting global trade.

The knock-on effect is being felt by freight carriers in the UK presently.

When the Covid-19 pandemic broke out early last year, numerous countries implemented national lockdowns and stopped producing goods, thereby halting economic growth.

As a result, shipping companies started limiting the number of cargo ships they were sending out.

This halted the normal flow of imported and exported commodities and resulted in the non-collection of empty containers.

Disruptions like this have a significant effect on all parties involved in your supply chain.

For instance, UK residents have been complaining about food and petrol shortages, which is having an impact on HGV drivers and those in HGV training.

Also, those planning home renovations undoubtedly feel the effects of shipping disruption as materials are scarce. 

Various businesses affected by the shipping disruption

The only thing in the UK that isn’t in short supply at the moment are shortages.

If you can afford a car, you may run into fuel supply issues.

However, there are hints that the situation is abating.

If you go to the supermarket, you are likely to see some empty shelves.

The Christmas season is approaching, but circumstances are tough: candies and sausage rolls, as well as gifts, turkeys, and wreaths, may be hard to come by.

Here are the three businesses worst hit by shipping disruption in the UK:

Home improvement and decking materials

In the United Kingdom, building supplies have been in limited supply, threatening DIY projects and putting the building industry under strain.

Shipping/supply chain disruption and post-Brexit import regulations have bumped up timber costs in particular.

According to builders’ merchant Jewson, companies are rationing cement, fibreboard, and insulation shipments.

Despite the supply shortfall, the UK construction industry is recovering after the worst of the pandemic, although long delays and huge price hikes are a result of the shortages.

Composite decking suppliers like Ultradecking UK are reported to have thrived due to the increased availability of composite materials and growing timber pricing.

Nevertheless, if your property is already spacious enough for you and all you need is some new furnishings. Your luck can run out even there. 

Ikea, the world’s largest furniture firm, gets 25% of its items from China, and its raw materials are in limited supply.

As a result, the company, too, is experiencing supply chain issues, which it anticipates will persist until next year.

Toys and technology

The week before Christmas, parents scramble to get their children the hottest must-have toy. 

This year, though, the search will be even more difficult, especially for high-tech gadgets.

Many video gamers are waiting impatiently to get their hands on Sony’s PlayStation 5 console because of a chip scarcity.

The device has been difficult to come by for the entire year. It’s supposed to sell for £449, but it’s always out of stock and occasionally seen at a more exorbitant cost online.

The PlayStation is manufactured in China, so around 70% of the world’s toys and shipping costs to the UK have skyrocketed.

As a result of the pandemic’s impact on global supply chains, shipping containers are becoming increasingly scarce in Asia, driving up shipping costs by 10%

Even if containers are available, delivery times have increased, leaving less time to get items into stores before the holiday season.

The Toy Retailers Association has warned that buyers may have difficulty finding toy items, while John Lewis has said it will charter a fleet of extra ships to ensure enough Christmas goods are in its stock.

The Entertainer, one of the nation’s largest toy shops, has warned that delays at UK ports could cause scarcity this Christmas as it will make it more difficult to get items to where they are needed on time.

Chocolates and Dairy Products

It’s taking longer for supermarkets to replenish their shelves when a product sells out due to an insufficiency of hauliers in the United Kingdom.

This has disrupted the supply of chocolate, sweets, and other confectionery products.

Many families indulge in bountiful portions of sweets during Christmas, but some of the most popular options may be missing from store shelves as the holiday season approaches.

Nestle, the company behind Quality Street, Aero, and KitKat, has admitted to having supply chain difficulties due to a lack of LGV drivers in the UK and global shipping disruption.

The conglomerate, based in Switzerland, is the leading producer of milk products, but it isn’t the only company in its industry to be affected.

Due to a shortage of hauliers, milk and cheese manufacturer Arla, which distributes milk to all of the UK’s biggest grocery stores, has reduced its deliveries.

Since the beginning of April, the company has been battling a lack of drivers, with no hope in sight.

It used to distribute up to 2,400 retail outlets per day, but it can no longer do so.

The company claims to be engaging customers to ensure supplies are delivered on time.

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