Wetherspoons joins Costa, Pizza Hut and Toby Carvery in latest food shortage nightmare


    The pandemic and Brexit related issues has caused there to be a huge shortage in HGV drivers. A Road Haulage Association (RHA) survey of its members estimates that there is now a shortage of more than 100,000 drivers in the UK, out of a pre-pandemic total of about 600,000.

    Molson Coors, which owns Carling and Coors, said in a statement: “Like many in our great British brewing and pub sector, we have been hit by the HGV driver shortage.

    “While our overall availability is good, there are intermittent pockets of pressure in our supply network that are unfortunately affecting a number of Wetherspoons pubs.

    “After such a difficult period for our industry, it’s heartbreaking to be letting any customer down and we will continue to do everything in our power to get our much-loved brands back on every Wetherspoons bar.”

    Taking to Twitter to share their thoughts, customers were not impressed with the shortage.

    Some of its Toby restaurants reported no Yorkshire puddings over the weekend in certain branches.

    A spokesperson for the chain said: “Like the rest of retail (supermarkets included) we are seeing sporadic shortages caused by driver shortages, exacerbated by absences caused by Covid pings.

    “We are hopeful that the new rules that apply to fully vaccinated workers will help ease the situation in the short term.”

    Pizza Hut also wanted customers that there were no kids’ desserts, with some branches also running low on dough and fizzy drinks.

    A spokesperson explained: “Like other businesses in the UK, Pizza Hut Restaurants faces a complicated situation as we manage pandemic-related issues, including a supply chain affected but the shortage in HGV drivers.

    “We are working with our suppliers and partners to limit disruption for our customers at this time.”

    One notice in Norwich states that there was no stuffed crust or cheesy bites bases available, while the ice cream factory and all cookie dough puddings were off the menu too.

    Costa Coffee has also been hit by supply woes with the company announcing they are struggling to keep up with demand.

    Decaffeinated coffee is unavailable in some stores while the much-loved strawberry lemonade is also off the menu in some of its stores.

    The company added: “A number of our stores are experiencing issues due to supplier/delivery problems caused by the pandemic.

    “We’re working closely with our suppliers to get this sorted ASAP.”

    A Government spokesperson said: “We’re working closely with industry to address sector challenges, which are similarly being faced by other countries around the world.

    “This includes plans to streamline the process for new drivers to gain their HGV licence and to increase the number of driving tests able to be conducted.

    “We want to see employers make long-term investments in the UK domestic workforce and make employment more attractive through offering training, career options and wage increases.”

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