Sumary of From coffee to microchips – how the supply chain crisis is disrupting UK plc:
- The scale of Britain’s supply chain meltdown is the worst since the 1970s, when the three-day week, power cuts and industrial disputes saw rubbish pile up in the streets.
- Fast forward four decades and the shortages in modern Britain stem from Covid-19 disrupting an intricate network of global supply chains where the slightest problem throws the whole system.
- Experts say worker shortages are at the heart of the UK’s problems, causing issues to bubble up across the economy;
- Britain’s economy came close to stalling in July as disruption from shortages of workers and materials dragged down growth.
- In an example of the multiple touch points for the supply crisis, the Guardian has tracked a humble cup of takeaway coffee from its source, revealing the impact of global heating, shortages of workers and materials, and soaring prices.
- However, there have been issues getting deliveries to supermarkets mainly due to lorry driver shortages.
- The number of Romanian and Bulgarian workers in particular, who would typically fill lower-paid logistics and food production roles, has plunged by almost 90,000, or 24%, since the end of 2019. Employees from eight eastern European countries, including Poland and the Czech Republic, have fallen by more than 100,000, or 12%.
- HospitalityA hiring notice in a restaurant window in Windsor, Berkshire, UK. Photograph: Maureen McLean/REX/ShutterstockSupply chain snarl-ups have taken chicken off the menu at some Nando’s and KFC restaurants, milkshake at McDonald’s, and left Wetherspoon’s running out of toast and lager.