MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) – Grocery stores have been working hard to keep up with supply and demand changes since the pandemic. Now a new challenge ahead could impact your next shopping trip.
Grocers nationwide are concerned about supply chain issues.
Brandon Scholz, President and CEO of the Wisconsin Grocers Association says like many other industries, the pandemic has dramatically impacted grocery stores.
“Last March we saw stockpiling, hoarding, and things disappear from the shelves. Toilet paper, cleaning products, rice. All sorts of things,” said Scholz.
Once the stockpiling died down, grocers started to see the pandemic impact other parts of business.
“Some suppliers like meat packing companies…their employees got COVID and they had to shut down. In the dairy industry, they had to change packaging because schools weren’t taking milk anymore,” says Scholz.
It took months but businesses adjusted. Now a new challenge is brewing.
“In the last 3 or 4 months we have seen a dramatic change in the industry’s supply chain. Manufacturers, growers, producers, suppliers have all come to the point where for a variety of reasons they can’t make enough like they used to,” he said.
The problem stems from a variety of shortages. Raw material, ingredients, and even workers are hard to come by for some suppliers.
“I know a bread company that couldn’t delivery on Monday because they didn’t have workers show up on Sunday to bake,” said Scholz.
So how could these issues impact shoppers? These supply chain issues could mean higher prices or that certain products are harder to come by. Scholz says getting more people back to work will be a big step in the right direction.
In the meantime, shoppers are encouraged to be patient as stores work to adjust.
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