Tesco suppliers are being forced to bin nearly 50 tons of fresh food every week. The main reason for this is that there are too few lorry drivers to transport produce to the stores. This admission was made during an industry-wide round-table organized by the Department for Transport. It marks the first time a supermarket chain has broken cover, to indicate the extent to which the lack of drivers is affecting the food and drink sector.
Suppliers are being forced to delay or cancel thousands delivery loads every week to supermarkets and restaurants, because haulage firms cannot find enough drivers to transport the produce. The shelf-life of fresh produce is reduced and can spoil before it even leaves the wholesalers while supermarkets often deem short-dated goods delivered late to distribution centers and stores unsellable.
More than 65,000 HGV drivers are needed to make up for the shortfall, according to the Road Haulage Association. According to inews.co.uk, the crisis is so severe that one leading industry figure has called for the government to put the army on standby to transport food if the situation worsens.
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