No Quality Street at Christmas? Nestle warns it is hit by supply chain crisis

The maker of Quality Street has said it is ‘working hard’ to make sure the Christmas favourite is on shelves before December 25 after also being hit by the ongoing supply chain crisis which is threatening to detail the winter holiday for millions this year. 

Nestle, which also makers Lion bars, Aero and KitKat, admitted it has been experiencing some supply problems but is desperately trying to ensure that its products – including the popular Quality Street tins – are available for Britons this Christmas.

Chief executive Mark Schneider told the BBC ‘we are seeing some labour shortages and some transportation issues but it’s our UK team’s top priority to work constructively with retailers to supply them’. When asked whether he could guarantee Quality Street would be in the shops this Christmas, he told the broadcaster: ‘We are working hard.’

Industry experts have been warning Britons to buy their Christmas dinner in advance and even keep it in the freezer as fears grow over supermarkets running out of festive items including pigs in blankets and other party foods in the run up to December 25.

A shortage of butchers could mean that farmers will be forced to ‘throw pigs in a skip’ because they can’t be slaughtered and carved – with 150,000 animals under threat of being culled in the next week. 

The meat crisis is compounding woes caused by a lack of HGV drivers, availability of fuel at petrol stations and labour shortages that could lead to a lack of choice this year, with many essential Christmas gifts and foods scarce or missing completely.  

Nearly two-thirds of UK manufacturers plan to raise their prices in the run-up to Christmas due to rising inflation, according to the British Chambers of Commerce. Its survey found 62 per cent of industrial firms expect to increase their prices over the next three months – the highest result since data gathering began at the end of the 1980s and far over the previous record of 38 per cent in 2008. The results suggest families are set for a Christmas crisis of rising costs as they prepare for what is already the most expensive time of the year. 

And with Cabinet Ministers failing to reassure people that supermarkets will be fully stocked this Christmas, and Boris Johnson even this week insisting it’s ‘not the job of government to come in and fix every problem’ when quizzed about the supply chain crisis, families are now taking matters into their own hands by stocking up on anything with a shelf life just in case. 

Staff from supermarket chain Aldi told consumer journalist Harry Wallop at a Christmas showcase that frozen turkey crowns are already 1,500 a day and pudding sales are up 45 per cent on last year. The retailer also revealed that 250,000 ‘Chocolate Orange bombes’ have been ordered from its supplier in anticipation that the dessert is likely to be Aldi’s biggest hit this Christmas. 

Marks and Spencer said sales of their frozen Christmas food have rocketed by 500 per cent in total on last year as families stockpile, with more than 25,000 turkeys sold by the start of October and sales of their party food growing by 40 per cent per week. 

Iceland revealed this week that people have already begun filling up on festive frozen food, with turkey sales up by 409 per cent compared to this time last year while the the word ‘Christmas’ reached over 17,000 searches across its website in the past week alone 

And Tesco executives have reportedly warned the Government that it is worried about panic-buying in the run-up to Christmas being ‘far worse’ than stockpiling that took place at the start of the pandemic last year, according to trade magazine The Grocer. 

It comes as Ipsos Mori polling reveals panic-buying, the energy crisis, a shortage of HGV drivers and fuel are some of the biggest concerns Britons have about this winter, with 54 per cent of families worried they can’t afford Christmas this year.  

The maker of Quality Street has said it is 'working hard' to make sure the Christmas favourite is on shelves before December 25 after also being hit by the ongoing supply chain crisis which is threatening to detail the winter holiday for millions this year

The maker of Quality Street has said it is 'working hard' to make sure the Christmas favourite is on shelves before December 25 after also being hit by the ongoing supply chain crisis which is threatening to detail the winter holiday for millions this year

The maker of Quality Street has said it is ‘working hard’ to make sure the Christmas favourite is on shelves before December 25 after also being hit by the ongoing supply chain crisis which is threatening to detail the winter holiday for millions this year

Analysis of price rises in the last year shows the cost of a second-hand car has risen more than £1,600, a tank of fuel is up more than £10 and the price of a pint of beer is creeping close to £4

Analysis of price rises in the last year shows the cost of a second-hand car has risen more than £1,600, a tank of fuel is up more than £10 and the price of a pint of beer is creeping close to £4

Analysis of price rises in the last year shows the cost of a second-hand car has risen more than £1,600, a tank of fuel is up more than £10 and the price of a pint of beer is creeping close to £4

Exclusive research for the Daily Mail by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) also yesterday revealed how inflation will cost the typical family of four an extra £1,800 by the end of this year. Meanwhile, a retired couple can expect to see living costs rise by more than £1,100, and a lower income couple could be stung by nearly £900

Exclusive research for the Daily Mail by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) also yesterday revealed how inflation will cost the typical family of four an extra £1,800 by the end of this year. Meanwhile, a retired couple can expect to see living costs rise by more than £1,100, and a lower income couple could be stung by nearly £900

Exclusive research for the Daily Mail by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) also yesterday revealed how inflation will cost the typical family of four an extra £1,800 by the end of this year. Meanwhile, a retired couple can expect to see living costs rise by more than £1,100, and a lower income couple could be stung by nearly £900

Headline CPI inflation has been spiking, reaching 3.2 per cent in August, and is expected to reach double the Bank of England's 2 per cent target

Headline CPI inflation has been spiking, reaching 3.2 per cent in August, and is expected to reach double the Bank of England's 2 per cent target

Headline CPI inflation has been spiking, reaching 3.2 per cent in August, and is expected to reach double the Bank of England’s 2 per cent target 

And with Cabinet Ministers failing to reassure people that supermarkets will be fully stocked this Christmas, and Boris Johnson even this week insisting it's 'not the job of government to come in and fix every problem' when quizzed about the supply chain crisis, families are now taking matters into their own hands by stocking up on anything with a shelf life just in case

And with Cabinet Ministers failing to reassure people that supermarkets will be fully stocked this Christmas, and Boris Johnson even this week insisting it's 'not the job of government to come in and fix every problem' when quizzed about the supply chain crisis, families are now taking matters into their own hands by stocking up on anything with a shelf life just in case

And with Cabinet Ministers failing to reassure people that supermarkets will be fully stocked this Christmas, and Boris Johnson even this week insisting it’s ‘not the job of government to come in and fix every problem’ when quizzed about the supply chain crisis, families are now taking matters into their own hands by stocking up on anything with a shelf life just in case

Britain faces bleak winter of soaring energy costs: Gas prices rise by 37% TODAY pushing more firms to brink of collapse, National Grid boss warns of electricity shortages and experts predict bills will soar to £1,700 a year 

Britain is facing a bleak winter of soaring energy costs, with gas prices rising by a staggering 37 per cent in a single day and pushing more energy firms to the brink of collapse while the National Grid warned of electricity shortages as the country faces its worst crisis since the first Covid outbreak last year.

Millions are facing a financial squeeze because of rising inflation driven by labour shortages, rising energy costs, a lack of HGV drivers and gaps in global supply chains, as it was revealed hard-pressed families face paying £1,700 more for energy in April and an extra £1,800 for other essentials by Christmas.

While Boris Johnson brushed off the crisis and used his Manchester Tory conference speech to set out his vision for a ‘high wage, high skilled, high productivity’ economy, the price of wholesale gas surged by £1 a unit to 400p per therm this morning – up 37 per cent in a day and 600 per cent higher than the start of 2021.

Prices reversed course hours later, sending the UK contracts back to £2.87, after Russian President Vladimir Putin sought to stabilise the gas market by saying that state-backed monopoly exporter Gazprom could increase supplies to Europe. 

Critics accused Mr Putin of trying to stave off allegations that Moscow is trying to ‘weaponise’ gas supplies amid tensions between Russia and NATO powers over Ukraine. 

On a day of worsening news, National Grid’s chief executive John Pettigrew told the FT that Britain will face tighter electricity supplies this winter due to a lack of capacity in the system and a colder winter predicted, which means the cost of electricity will increase as gas prices spike to record high.  

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Desperate to ensure Christmas is normal this year after the chaos of Covid last year, single mother Pat Smith, 26, has splurged £2,000 on food already, clearing shelves at six supermarkets and grabbing 24 multipacks of crisps to her overflowing trolley rather than just one. 

She told the Sun: ‘I don’t want to miss out. I’ve planned and I’m ready. I am buying what I need for the next four months including Christmas Day. Last year’s lockdown hit me hard. I ran short of items and couldn’t get to the shops regularly. 

‘When I did, the shelves were empty. As Christmas approached, I was devastated my family wouldn’t have everything they needed. I couldn’t get a turkey or the special ingredients I use to make the stuffing. My family’s favourite drinks were either too expensive due to price hikes or not available. I ended up serving cold chicken and ham with salad.’ 

Richard Harrow, chief executive of the British Frozen Food Federation, said: ‘Frozen food sales grew rapidly during the pandemic and we are now seeing evidence of a growing awareness of frozen food’s quality, convenience and ability to reduce food waste.’

James Withers, of Scotland Food & Drink, told the Independent that families should ‘plan ahead’ and freeze what they can as early as possible to avoid having missing ingredients to a traditional Christmas dinner. 

‘Ultimately, now I think we have just run out of time,’ he warned. 

‘I don’t think there is anything that can be done now to get the Christmas trade where it should be. That’s despite warnings being sounded since the summer of the scale of the potential labour shortage we might face.’ 

Polling shared with MailOnline by Ipsos Mori indicates that panic is sweeping the nation, with 75 per cent of people stating panic-buying was something they were worried about affecting their Christmas negatively, closely followed by the energy crisis (70 per cent). 

A lack of HGV drivers to deliver food, presents and other goods was also of serious concern (68 per cent), followed by inflation at 62 per cent. Six in ten people are also worried about the impact of the current fuel crisis, while 54 per cent of people admitted they are concerned they could catch Covid.  

Bridget Williams, Ipsos Mori’s research director, said: ‘Despite Boris Johnson’s plans to ”save Christmas”, the majority of people are currently concerned about the impact of all these crises on Christmas this year. As well as likely shortages of food, drinks and presents to buy, there are concerns about a squeeze in household incomes with rising prices, particularly amongst women and families with children.’

A raft of major companies have warned of inflationary pressures due to labour shortages, rising energy costs and gaps in global supply chains, including Greggs, Hotel Chocolat, and consumer goods giants Unilever and Reckitt.

‘Acute supply shortages and rising raw material costs drove an historic surge in inflationary pressures in the third quarter,’ said Suren Thiru, the BCC’s head of economics.

It comes as Britain is facing a bleak winter of soaring energy costs, with gas prices rising by a staggering 37 per cent in a single day and pushing more energy firms to the brink of collapse while the National Grid warned of electricity shortages.

Millions are facing a financial squeeze because of rising inflation driven by labour shortages, rising energy costs, a lack of HGV drivers and gaps in global supply chains, as it was revealed hard-pressed families face paying £1,700 more for energy in April and an extra £1,800 for other essentials by Christmas.

While Mr Johnson brushed off the crisis and used his Manchester Tory conference speech to set out his vision for a ‘high wage, high skilled, high productivity’ economy, the price of wholesale gas surged by £1 a unit to 400p per therm this morning – up 37 per cent in a day and 600 per cent higher than the start of 2021.

‘Stop making businesses the bogeymen’: Britain’s top bosses accuse Boris Johnson of setting country on the path to high inflation amid fears labour shortages will trigger spiralling prices unless the Government intervenes 

Industry chiefs last night accused Boris Johnson of setting Britain on the path to rampant inflation as the Prime Minister stepped up his battle with business.

Firms warned labour shortages – which have triggered empty shelves and queues at petrol stations – will lead to spiralling prices unless the Government intervenes.

In his Conservative Party conference speech yesterday, Mr Johnson admitted the process of reshaping the economy to one with less immigration and better wages will be ‘difficult’.

But he insisted he will not change course as he accused bosses of using mass immigration as ‘an excuse’ not to invest in their company or staff.

However business leaders hit back last night, accusing Mr Johnson of treating them like the ‘bogeyman’ over the UK’s labour shortages.

Speaking yesterday at the conference, in Manchester, Mr Johnson said: ‘That’s the direction in which the country is going now – towards a high-wage, high-skilled, high-productivity and, yes, thereby a low-tax economy. 

‘That is what the people of this country need and deserve,’ the Prime Minister said.

‘Yes, it will take time, and sometimes it will be difficult, but that is the change that people voted for in 2016.’

But he faced a tsunami of criticism from the private sector which accused him of indulging in ‘anti-business rhetoric’ and ‘playing the blame game’.

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI) warned the economy is at a ‘fragile moment’ with the risk of inflation becoming a problem. 

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Prices reversed course hours later, sending the UK contracts back to £2.87, after Russian President Vladimir Putin sought to stabilise the gas market by saying that state-backed monopoly exporter Gazprom could increase supplies to Europe. Critics accused Mr Putin of trying to stave off allegations that Moscow is trying to ‘weaponise’ gas supplies amid tensions between Russia and NATO powers over Ukraine. 

On a day of worsening news, National Grid’s chief executive John Pettigrew told the FT that Britain will face tighter electricity supplies this winter due to a lack of capacity in the system and a colder winter predicted, which means the cost of electricity will increase as gas prices spike to record high.  

Investment experts Moody’s also warned that more UK energy firms will go to the wall, which will push hundreds of thousands of people on to more expensive tariffs with new providers. While Britain’s Energy Intensive Users Group, which represents steel, chemical and fertiliser firms, said production at some plants is already being halted ‘at times of peak demand’ due to energy prices. They have called on the Government to give financial support to keep businesses in the way a taxpayer-funded deal to curb CO2 shortages was done to keep two fertiliser plants running last month.

The explosive rise that will hit households and businesses is being fed by fears that a cost of living crisis has arrived as global oil prices also jumped to a three-year high of $83 a barrel. And as a result new figures show average petrol prices have hit 136.10p per litre, the highest level since September 2013. 

Despite all this, the Prime Minister gave only a cursory mention of the crisis rocking Britain and merely indicated there are ‘difficulties’ to come – instead giving a rambling keynote speech to the Tory faithful at the party conference which was instead packed with jokes and almost entirely devoid of new policies. 

Business leaders slammed Mr Johnson’s speech, with the Confederation of British Industry warning that his economic policies could stoke inflation while the British Chambers of Commerce accused him of failing to provide firms with urgent answers ‘to the problems they are facing in the here and now’. 

Trade union leaders also lined up to condemn Mr Johnson. Unite’s new general secretary Sharon Graham raged: ‘Without serious action, this speech is nothing more than headline-chasing by a prime minister desperate to deflect from the serious and growing cost-of-living crisis happening on his watch.’ 

Manuel Cortes, general-secretary of the TSSA transport union, added: ‘As ever, this political jester came up with nothing but hot air.’ Another critic said: ‘Britain burns while Johnson fiddles’. 

Even Thatcherite think-tanks denounced the speech. Matthew Lesh of the Adam Smith Institute said: ‘Boris’ rhetoric was bombastic but vacuous and economically illiterate. Shortages and rising prices simply cannot be blustered away with rhetoric about migrants.’ 

Mark Littlewood of the Institute of Economic Affairs added: ‘Unnecessarily restricting the supply of labour may lead to wage increases, but these will be passed on in price increases. A strategy to make things more expensive will not create a genuinely high wage economy, merely the illusion of one.’ 

Business leaders slammed Mr Johnson’s speech as Lord Wolfson, CEO of Next and a Brexiteer Tory life peer, warned of ‘real panic and despondency’ in the restaurant, hotel and care industry because of a lack of staff. When asked about the Government’s feeling that British business needs a ‘shock’ to get it off its reliance to foreign labour and retrain Britons to do the jobs, Lord Woolfson said: ‘That approach leads to queues at petrol stations and pigs being unnecessarily shot’.   

And just as Mr Johnson denied the country had fallen into chaos, investors singled out the £2trillion gilt market to sell Government bonds – a sign the markets are gloomy about the UK’s economic outlook.   

Labour party chairwoman Anneliese Dodds said the Prime Minister’s speech was ‘vacuous’ and that he ‘talked more about beavers than he did about action to tackle the multiple crises facing working people up and down the country’. SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford thundered: ‘For all the waffle and deflection, the prime minister cannot escape the fact that millions of families are poorer and worse off as a direct result of his government’s damaging policies.’ 

Greggs published its results and warned that despite encouraging sales figures it was facing higher costs due to shortages of staff and food ingredients. 

One shopper shared this image with MailOnline of all the Christmas treats she's been buying in advance. Gilly Morgan said she's so far spent around £500 on her Christmas food shopping in case supermarket shelves are empty in December

One shopper shared this image with MailOnline of all the Christmas treats she's been buying in advance. Gilly Morgan said she's so far spent around £500 on her Christmas food shopping in case supermarket shelves are empty in December

One shopper shared this image with MailOnline of all the Christmas treats she’s been buying in advance. Gilly Morgan said she’s so far spent around £500 on her Christmas food shopping in case supermarket shelves are empty in December

Food industry experts warned shoppers to brace themselves for an increase of ‘four or five per cent’ by the end of November followed by a similar rise in January

Food industry experts warned shoppers to brace themselves for an increase of ‘four or five per cent’ by the end of November followed by a similar rise in January

Food industry experts warned shoppers to brace themselves for an increase of ‘four or five per cent’ by the end of November followed by a similar rise in January

A raft of major companies have warned of rising costs due to labour shortages, rising energy costs and gaps in global supply chains, including Greggs

A raft of major companies have warned of rising costs due to labour shortages, rising energy costs and gaps in global supply chains, including Greggs

A raft of major companies have warned of rising costs due to labour shortages, rising energy costs and gaps in global supply chains, including Greggs

Christmas crisis deepens: Now nearly two-thirds of British manufacturers say they will raise prices in the next three months after being hit by mounting costs

Nearly two-thirds of UK manufacturers plan to raise their prices in the run-up to Christmas due to rising inflation, according to the British Chambers of Commerce.

Its survey found 62% of industrial firms expect to increase their prices over the next three months – the highest result since data gathering began at the end of the 1980s and far over the previous record of 38% in 2008.

The results suggest families are set for a Christmas crisis of rising costs as they prepare for what is already the most expensive time of the year.

A raft of major companies have warned of inflationary pressures due to labour shortages, rising energy costs and gaps in global supply chains, including Greggs, Hotel Chocolat, and consumer goods giants Unilever and Reckitt.

‘Acute supply shortages and rising raw material costs drove an historic surge in inflationary pressures in the third quarter,’ said Suren Thiru, the BCC’s head of economics.

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Hotel Chocolat – which has more than a hundred shops in the UK – said prices for customers would rise up to nine per cent over most of its range due to more expensive ingredients, labour and transport.

Exclusive research for the Mail by the Centre for Economics and Business Research reveals how inflation will cost the typical family of four an extra £1,800 by the end of this year, while a retired couple can expect to see living costs rise by more than £1,100, and a lower income couple could be stung by nearly £900. 

But while many Britons are fear a financial hit, Mr Johnson insisted that he is not worried about rising prices because he believes they will be temporary, and insisted it is ‘not his job’ to fix every aspect of supply chains in the UK.

Asked about the situation during the Conservative Party conference, he told the BBC: ‘Actually I think that people have been worried about inflation for a long time and it hasn’t materialised.’

When pressed on the UK’s HGV driver shortage he attempted to deflect attention back to the private sector, saying ‘it’s not the job of government to come in and try and fix every problem in business and industry’.

Referencing Margaret Thatcher’s 1980s dictum – which ironically she used to stress the need to control inflation in a market economy – Mr Johnson said: ‘In a famous phrase, there is no alternative. There is no alternative.

‘The UK has got to – and we can – do much, much better by becoming a higher-wage, higher-productivity economy.’

But he admitted that Christmas might only be better from a ‘low base’ amid fears of ongoing shortages – after it was effectively cancelled during the pandemic last year.

Furious business chiefs accused the Prime Minister of ‘buck-passing’, while cabinet ministers told MailOnline they were concerned about ‘complacency’ creeping in over inflation.

In a stark warning of the bumpy road ahead this winter, the Bank of England has already flagged that inflation could hit 4 per cent by the end of the year, while supermarkets say food prices could increase by 5 per cent.

The energy price cap has now also increased, pushing up bills for more than 15 million households by an average of close to £140 a year.

And the soaring cost of wholesale gas has seen many suppliers go bust – forcing millions of customers on cheap deals onto more expensive tariffs linked to the price cap.

Meanwhile, new figures show pump prices have hit 136.10p per litre, the highest level since September 2013. As living costs soar across the country, consumer polls suggest as many as half of Britons have already started cutting back, fearing they may have to penny-pinch now in order to save up for what could be a pricey Christmas.

Others have started shopping early – hoping to beat the price rises – with Aldi’s already selling 1,500 frozen turkey crowns a day, while Christmas pudding sales are up 45 per cent.

A survey, carried out by Consumer Intelligence, found many had started to scale back spending within the last one to three months – with most fearing rising food and energy prices.

Meanwhile, analysis of price rises in the last year alone shows the cost of a second-hand car has risen more than £1,600, a tank of fuel is up more than £10, the price of a pint of beer is creeping close to £4 and a bottle of prosecco has risen 55p to £8.

The new month of October also marked the end of the furlough salary support scheme as well as the withdrawal of an extra £20-a-week for struggling households receiving Universal Credit.

It comes as in a flurry of interviews ahead of his keynote speech to Tory conference today, the PM denied that the country is in ‘crisis’, comparing the disruption to a ‘giant waking up’ and ‘creaking’ after the pandemic.

Link hienalouca.com

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