// Iceland pleads with shoppers not to panic buy in the run-up to Christmas
// Stockpiling would damage supply chains, Iceland boss Richard Walker says
// Shoppers faced a significant increase in costs due to the national lorry driver shortage
Iceland boss Richard Walker has urged customers not to panic buy ahead of Christmas.
Walker said that while he has concerns about supplies over the festive season, there is no need for consumers to stockpile as it would affect supply chains.
The managing director had warned earlier this month that shoppers faced a significant increase in costs due to the national lorry driver shortage.
Supermarkets have been at the forefront of demands in recent months that the government ease Brexit immigration restrictions and allow HGV drivers to be added to the Shortage Occupation List.
Walker said “ballerinas and orchestra concert musicians” were able to be brought in at the expense of workers who could keep the wheels of the economy moving.
“Of course, longer term, we need to recruit UK drivers and I hope that will happen but that will take six-nine months to get them trained up and we have Christmas to worry about before then”, he said.
The UK’s logistics sector says it remains short of 100,000 drivers.