Retailers React
Shelf Shortages and the Pingdemic

Our survey amongst the Independent convenience store community across the UK last week has shown that they are being seriously impacted by the so-called “pingdemic.” Respondents were independent store keepers throughout the UK.

57.3% of respondents said range availability has been the biggest issue for them. 44.9% attribute the shortages to the Covid Track and Trace Pingdemic, 27.5% blame Brexit and just 8% feel shortages are caused by Covid infections. The remainder highlighted driver shortages and a combination of the above, making the perfect storm.

33.3% of store keepers said delivery issues were causing them problems. Stores reported that they didn’t feel it had much of an impact on individual customers so far – but that doesn’t mean they haven’t been affected, 67.6% said they felt it had had a detrimental financial impact on their store.

Managing Director of Iceland Supermarkets, Richard Walker, says they are recruiting 2,000 more employees to keep their head above water in the depths of the ‘pingdemic’.

Perhaps the most important question is: “How bad do things need to get before the authorities take action to reduce the impact of the driver shortage and the self-isolation over-reaction – particularly amongst those who have already been twice-vaccinated?”

We watch with interest the outcome of the government plans for key workers to be able to become exempt from their isolation.