The boss of a popular toy show has warned of Christmas shortages – telling parents if they ‘see it, buy it’.
Geoff Sheffield, commercial director of The Entertainer, spoke on Monday morning as businesses continue to grapple with supply chain issues.
With less than 100 days until Christmas, Mr Sheffield urged parents to plan early to avoid disappointment when December 25 rolls around.
He cited a variety of issues behind the supply chain problems, including the lack of shipping containers from Asia and the current shortage of truck drivers.
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Demand for shipping containers has skyrocketed during the pandemic as demand for PPE equipment has increased worldwide.
“Since then we’ve never been able to replace that many containers, so there’s been a shortage,” he told show hosts Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield on This Morning.
“Combine that with closures in ports due to Covid outbreaks, closures in factories due to Covid, demand hasn’t decreased since the lockdown.
“Consumer demand continues to be high in the toy industry and as a result the demand for space on ships has not diminished.
“As a result, we are seeing ever-increasing delays and costs in getting costs on the water to the UK in a timely manner.”
Mr Sheffield said the other challenge facing retailers is a shortage of HGV drivers, which means stores are struggling to expel incoming goods.
In a warning to parents, Mr Sheffield said: “The reason we are speaking to you today is to make sure our customers at The Entertainer, whom we have loved and welcomed since stores reopened, understand [to] plan early and if you see it, buy it.
“The reality is we’re running out of days to get things in the water and in time for the UK.”
He added: “My advice is definitely get out early. The kind of stuff you expect to be popular has been popular all year. Things like Barbie, LOL
“Then you have to watch some of the movie content that we’ve had recently, the Paw Patrol movie which is doing really well.”
A survey has suggested that more than a quarter of UK consumers have already started their Christmas shopping and 45% plan to avoid large online retailers this year as the pandemic and supply chain issues affect consumer behavior. ‘purchase.
The Transport Secretary has also failed to guarantee that there will be enough lorries on UK roads this Christmas to deliver all the gifts on time.
Grant Shapps told the Commons it was ‘out of the government’s hands’ to make the guarantee as he answered questions about the heavyweight staff shortage last week.
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