Britain's retail industry warned the government on Friday that unless it moves to alleviate an acute shortage of truckers in the next 10 days then significant disruption was inevitable in the run-up to Christmas. As the world's fifth-largest economy emerges from COVID-19 lockdowns, a spike in European natural gas prices and a post-Brexit shortage of truck drivers have left Britain grappling with soaring energy prices and a potential food supply crunch. BP temporarily closed some of its 1,200 UK petrol stations due to a lack of both unleaded and diesel grades, which it blamed on driver shortages. ExxonMobil's Esso said a small number of its 200 Tesco Alliance retail sites had also been impacted. Queues formed at some gas stations in London and the southern English county of Kent on Friday as motorists rushed to fill up, Reuters reporters said. Diesel ran out at one station visited by Reuters.
SPAR Italy retail partner Maiora has opened two new in-store food production sites for bakery and delicatessen, as well as an in-store fresh fish platform. The new sites will supply fresh products daily to company-owned SPAR stores across six Italian regions. Maiora’s company-owned SPAR store network comprises 89 stores, with about 2,000 team members in the regions Apulia, Basilicata, Campania, Calabria, and Abruzzo. The new bakeries are located at INTERSPAR outlets in Modugno and near the airport in Pescara. The bakers integrate quality ingredients and traditional methods to prepare local favourites, enhancing the product offering at SPAR stores.
Asda has announced that it will take a collection service provided by its logistics partner EVCL Chill and absorb 290 employees associated with the business. The logistics operator entered administration last weekend, putting hundreds of jobs at risk, according to media reports. EVCL Chill works with Asda to deliver its ‘Asda Collect’ service, which transports chilled products from suppliers to two sites in Daventry and Rochdale before distribution in stores across the retailer's network. The Daventry site is operated by EVCL Chill and the Rochdale service is located at an Asda depot, operated by logistics partner, Wincanton.