Why Britain could be set for a beer and crisps shortage

By Iain Leggat
Monday, 16th August 2021, 1:36 pm
The UK is set to face a beer and crisp shortage due to a lack of delivery drivers and strike action (Shutterstock)

The UK is set to face a beer and crisp shortage due to a lack of delivery drivers and strike action.

Around 1,000 draymen are set to walk out after losing up to £10,000 in a year due to furlough and a lack of overtime, the Unite union said.

The draymen, who are responsible for 40 per cent of deliveries to pubs, have also seen no pay increase for 2020.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Strike action to take place in August

The employees - who work for firm GXO Logistics Drinks - have voted to go on strike, with these 24 hour walk outs taking place on August 24 and September 2.

They will also ‘work to rule’ from August 24 until November 15, which means overtime is banned.

Unite’s Joe Clarke said: “Our members have suffered great financial hardship so voting almost unanimously for this action is no surprise.”

“Now industrial action looms for late August, we call, once again, for the company to engage in meaningful negotiations regarding a decent pay increase for our members.”

Mr Clarke previously explained: “A beer drought could result if our members vote for industrial action because they make 40 percent of the beer deliveries in the country.

“This disruption would be on top of the ‘pingdemic’ that is already hitting the sector.”

The number of HGV delivery drivers has already seen a drop due to the pandemic and the effects of Brexit.

The Co-op is currently recruiting 3,000 temporary workers to keep stores stocked, with the Road Haulage Association saying 100,000 more are needed.

To help tackle the shortage the Government has temporarily extended drivers’ permitted working time from nine to ten hours, allowing longer journeys.

A version of this article originally appeared on NationalWorld.com