SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – You may have noticed some of your everyday products are getting harder to find on store shelves.
Those in the freight industry blame a big disruption in the supply chain, as many manufacturers are still recovering from COVID-19 shutdowns.
Shipping delays across the globe are continuing to have an impact on companies and consumers in the Ozarks.
SRC in Springfield says supply chain disruptions were made worse after the first peek of the pandemic subsided.
Folks ready to spend money they had saved during COVID-19 shutdowns created a huge demand for just about everything.
“The absolute demand that has been put into the market in a very short piece of time has created a lot of the shortage frustrations when you go to buy something,” says Chad Meyers, Executive Vice President of SRC Holdings.
Meyers says SRC received a year’s worth of orders at the start of 2021, immediately putting a delay on a range of diesel engine components the company ships out.
Joe Hoffman, Supervisor of Supply Chain at SRC Heavy Duty, says the issue boils down to a lack of labor.
“We’ve seen COVID outbreaks; we’ve seen people shortages; we’ve seen an increase in shipping times; we’ve seen an increase in shipping times, shipping costs; we’ve seen driver shortages,” says Hoffman.
He says shipments that used to take seven to ten days are now arriving in 15 to 30 days.
The lack of workers has a ripple effect, causing major clogs at shipping ports across the world.
It means many products you’re looking for maybe sitting in a metal container or on a truck somewhere, waiting for staff to move or unload it.
“That just backs up the supply chain even further,” says Hoffman.
For a company that makes parts for diesel engines, the delays put SRC in a unique position.
Every product they can’t get out on time could mean one less semi-truck on the road or one less tractor in the field.
“For the most part, it could mean a truck is not moving, and that the truck and whatever it was carrying to a local retail, a Menards or Lowes, whatever it be, there may be something on that truck that a consumer is waiting to get as well, too,” says Meyers.
SRC predicts these challenges could continue for another 12 to 18 months, making it difficult for shoppers to find gifts they want this holiday season.
Consumer analysts say the ripple effect will also likely impact the price of your everyday products.