Wholesalers implement heatwave restrictions

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Major wholesalers imple­mented capping and added additional delivery days to help prevent disruption to orders during the UK’s second heatwave, according to an investigation from our sister tile betterRetailing.

Last week, tem­peratures across the UK reached highs of 35 degrees Celsius. Although the temperatures weren’t as high as the previous heatwave several weeks earlier, this recent spell of hot weather lasted a few days longer.

In a letter sent to retail­ers, and seen by Alex Yau, Nisa said it needed to “make some interventions” to protect availability during the period. It said: “As you are aware, in recent weeks we have experienced chal­lenges with freeze orders being over pick capacity due to demand because of the extreme hot tempera­tures across the UK. This has resulted in us having to manage the freeze volumes through the network to the capabilities of the depot.”

Read more: Five specialist wholesalers form consolidated delivery service

Measures taken by the wholesaler included removing lines ordered less frequently as well as reducing the number of items received by retail­ers. Nisa had previously capped ambient orders to help manage capac­ity during the previous heatwave.

Parfetts operations director Andy Whitworth told betterRetailing the wholesaler had added a Saturday delivery slot to help man­age increased volumes. He said: “Service lev­els to retailers remain over 92% despite these increased volumes. Previ­ous improvements to our delivered service earlier this year have helped to ensure we continue to service all our retailers during the exceptionally hot weather.”

Meanwhile, a Bestway spokesperson added that recent measures taken to sustain availability in­cluded additional forecast­ing of popular products.

“The whole industry is experiencing supply issues across many cat­egories, especially within grocery and impulse,” they added. “There are multiple challenges to supply, including an increased level of demand versus availability, raw material issues, staff resourcing challenges, logistical challenges and, of course, the continued inflationary pressures.

“As an independent wholesaler, we are fortu­nate as we are able to take quick decisions and act with agility in terms of reaction times. We have rearranged deliveries to accommodate weekend intake of stock to depots, and we have increased our stock ‘buy-ins’, where we anticipate future challenges to supply and work on joint forecasting and working to supplier allocations.”

Booker had also tem­porarily cancelled frozen deliveries during the July heatwave for health and safety, and to protect product integrity. Booker failed to respond when asked by betterRetailing whether it was implementing similar safeguards during the August heatwave.

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Paul Hill
Paul Hill is the Editor of Better Wholesaling. He can be found on Twitter at @BW_PaulHill, or contacted via paul.hill@newtrade.co.uk and 07960935659.

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