Retailers’ body warns indies to stock-up early for Christmas

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A leading trade association has reminded retailers to think ahead and consider ordering Christmas stock early amid the much-talked-about supply chain crisis.

With much of the news focusing on staff shortages affecting the food supply chain, British Independent Retailers Association (BIRA) has raised concerns that other products will also soon be in short supply. It is calling on independent retailers to stock well ahead of Christmas, the busiest time of the year.

BIRA CEO Andrew Goodacre said: “For some time we have been hearing about concerns regarding deliveries due to a shortage of drivers. At the moment, the focus has been on ensuring food supplies are maintained. However, as the shortage of drivers is unlikely to be resolved in the near future, I would urge non-food independent retailers to consider their supply chain in the run-up to the busy Christmas period.

“We do not want to see the large chains dominate supply by monopolising deliveries, and we want to see the supply to the smaller shops guaranteed.

“Given the problems faced by non-essential retailers in the past 18 months (and let’s not forget they were closed all of November last year), this is the most important Festive period ever. It would be a tragedy if supply problems undermined the independent retailers at the busiest time of the year. It may well be necessary to order early if the retailers have not already done so, and providing they have the cash to do so,” Goodacre said.