The supply chains of many businesses in Newfoundland and Labrador are under enormous pressure amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which means some owners cannot get the items they need to operate efficiently.
This has left some business owners with difficult decisions about what they will use to package their products, or even if they can continue to offer certain items.Bobby Bailey is co-owner, CEO and director of TVAL Skincare in St. John’s. His company makes skin care products, but the lack of particular bottles needed for a product has forced him to put the item on the shelf for now.
“We had to do this at different times, remove everything from the website for a particular product because we didn’t have the right kind of bottles,” Bailey told CBC Radio. Ready to go.
“There was no substitute at all, so we had to stop selling this one product. Luckily we have such a huge range so it wasn’t much of a problem, only one product was released. “
Packaging issues have also hit Rocket Bakery, which recently joined the Skip The Dishes food delivery app and is struggling to stay on top of its packaging supply.
Co-owner and CEO Kelly Mansell said “it’s the bane of my existence.”
“You spend a lot of time trying to find packaging, and for me it’s the menu items that we have and then how to package them,” she says.
“It really stimulates our business in a way, because I had to make some menu choices based on the packaging I have. “
Mansell said it was important for her and her business to use recyclable cardboard and paper packaging. But, she said, cardboard or paper cannot be used in some cases, forcing the company to use plastic.
“So we still use plastic, which we’re not very happy about, but we’re always looking for something that will work with food,” she says.
Bailey also said his business tries to stay as green as possible, a sacrifice his company has had to make due to the disruption of supply lines.
“The environment had to be [put on the] to a certain extent, and it breaks my heart because we’re doing our best to be as environmentally friendly as possible, ”he said.
For now, the two companies are going through the pandemic, still facing other challenges besides packaging issues.
Mansell said the wage and rent subsidies really helped Rocket Bakery during the first six weeks of the pandemic when income fell to absolute zero.
But, like most others, the pandemic remains unpredictable, and with the winter months to come, Mansell said she is already starting to adjust, offering an evening menu on Skip The Dishes – rather than morning and lunch menus – to help increase income.
Read more articles from CBC Newfoundland and Labrador