Retailers to face supply issues despite border backlog clearance

Dover port closure france ban covid-19
The backlog of lorries waiting to make the crossing could take days to clear
// Retailers have been warned of supply issues for fresh goods until backlog of trucks at Dover is cleared
// The France border closure came after a new highly-infectious coronavirus variant was found in the UK

The retail sector has been warned over supply issues for some fresh goods until the backlog of trucks at Dover is cleared.

The BRC said thousands of trucks have been stranded in Dover after France closed its borders earlier this week.

The border closure came after a new highly-infectious coronavirus variant was found in the UK.


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The closure has stopped the movement of some goods, including fresh foods, between Europe and the UK.

But the UK and French governments have reached a deal to reopen the border between the two countries to hauliers and some passengers from today, provided they test negative for Covid-19.

However, the backlog of lorries waiting to make the crossing could take days to clear.

“The deal was good news for consumers but it is essential that lorries get moving across the border as quickly as possible,” BRC food and sustainability director Andrew Opie said.

“Until the backlog is cleared and supply chains return to normal, we anticipate issues with the availability of some fresh goods.”

The closure has led to a rise in customers panic-buying.

Tesco reintroduced rationing rules on several products, following an increase in customers stockpiling.

The grocer’s UK chief executive Jason Tarry ensured that customers will have enough stock to get them through Christmas and the new year despite the ongoing closure of French and Belgian ports.

Waitrose said its stock levels “remain strong” and it is continuing with limits on a “very small number of products online”.

Morrisons and Aldi both said they had no plan to introduce limits, with Aldi adding that its stores were “fully stocked”.

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