Supermarket food distributor makes BUST, leaving 1,000 unemployed workers amid heavy truck driver chaos – .

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Supermarket food distributor makes BUST, leaving 1,000 unemployed workers amid heavy truck driver chaos – .


A privately funded transport company specializing in chilled food deliveries to Asda and Sainsbury’s has gone bankrupt, adding to concerns about gaps in shelves as Britain heads into a ‘winter of discontent’.

EVCL Chill, a subsidiary of EV Cargo, has filed an administration request, adding to speculation that the two supermarkets will have to take over the company to secure deliveries.

The company had a number of large supermarket contracts and employed approximately 1,000 workers in warehousing and truck driving roles.

It comes amid concerns that Britain will face severe food shortages this winter due to a shortage of truck drivers and an ongoing energy crisis.

Several of Britain’s biggest retailers on Friday warned ministers that the government has 10 days to avoid “significant disruption” over Christmas due to the lack of truck drivers.

Some of the issues that threaten a winter of discontent include:

  • A shortage of natural gas causing gas bills to skyrocket for millions of Britons, as well as the possibility of dozens of small energy companies going bankrupt;
  • However, the ministers specify that “there is no question that the lights go out, that people cannot heat their homes”. There will be no three-day workweek, nor a throwback to the 1970s;
  • A shortage of natural gas leading to the closure of fertilizer factories, which produce the CO2 used in soft drinks and the meat industry;
  • The government has since made an agreement with fertilizer companies to restart a plant in an attempt to maintain CO2 production;
  • A truck driver shortage crippling the UK transport industry, leaving shelves empty and delivery times slow;
  • Bosses say this could impact both Christmas dinners and impact the number of toys on the shelves;
  • Now, the bosses of the big fuel companies have warned that they will have to start closing the gas stations because there are not enough truck drivers to distribute efficiently to all of its gas stations;
  • It comes after the Bank of England warned yesterday that rising household energy bills would push up the cost of living by more than 4% this winter – the highest growth rate in a decade.

EVCL Chill, a subsidiary of EV Cargo, filed for administration yesterday, adding to speculation that the two supermarkets will have to take over the company to secure deliveries.

EVCL Chill was responsible for delivering 10,000 pallets of food and drink per day to the two retailers, which The Grocer says have been in talks with the PwC administrator for several weeks in an effort to protect a significant portion of their operations. refrigeration.

It comes amid concerns that Britain is facing a 'winter of discontent' characterized by severe food shortages due to a lack of truck drivers and an ongoing energy crisis.

It comes amid concerns that Britain is facing a ‘winter of discontent’ characterized by severe food shortages due to a lack of truck drivers and an ongoing energy crisis.

EVCL Chill operated depots in Penrith, Rochdale, Crick, Alfreton, Daventry and Bristol, and employed around 1,000 workers serving many Sainsbury’s and Asda supermarkets nationwide.

EVCL Chill was responsible for delivering 10,000 pallets of food and drink per day to the two retailers, which The Grocer says have been in talks with the PwC administrator for several weeks in an effort to protect a significant portion of their operations. refrigeration.

The Unite union, which has more than 500 members in the company, is seeking to ensure that workers employed directly under the Asda and Sainsbury’s contract will be transferred to work directly for supermarkets as part of a bailout .

It is owned by venture capitalist Emergevest who, as a separate company, will avoid bearing the cost of the collapse, such as severance pay.

Unite National Officer Matt Draper said: “The collapse of EVCL Chill at a time when demand for truck drivers in particular is huge, further calls into question the role and involvement of investors in venture capital in UK industry.

Food supply chains have been under intense stress in recent weeks due to shortages of around 100,000 truck drivers - resulting in empty shelves in many UK supermarkets.  Pictured: A shortage of fruit at a Sainsbury's store in London today

Food supply chains have been under intense stress in recent weeks due to shortages of around 100,000 truck drivers – resulting in empty shelves in many UK supermarkets. Pictured: A shortage of fruit at a Sainsbury’s store in London today

Sainsbury's said it was putting measures in place to secure deliveries after EVCL Chill collapsed

Sainsbury’s said it was putting measures in place to secure deliveries after EVCL Chill collapsed

“There is something fundamentally wrong with a system that allows wealthy business owners to avoid paying for its collapse when the taxpayer has to pick up the pieces. “

Sainsbury’s said it was putting measures in place to secure deliveries.

A spokesperson said: “We are in close contact with EVCL Chill Ltd. We have business continuity plans in place to ensure smooth operations and are confident that customers will be able to buy what they need when they shop with us. “

The news came just hours after several of Britain’s biggest retailers warned ministers they had just 10 days to avoid “significant disruption” over Christmas due to lack of truck drivers.

The British Retail Consortium has said disruption over the holiday season will be ‘inevitable’ unless the shortfall of around 90,000 drivers is addressed, while MPs said the military could be used as a short-term solution amid increasingly severe warnings about driver damage. shortage could occur in the coming weeks unless urgent measures are taken.

Ministers have reportedly discussed contingency plans for the military to drive tankers to station forecourts, but it is believed they would only be adopted as a last resort.

Agriculture Secretary George Eustice said the government was preparing to expand the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWS) this year to help tackle the heavy truck crisis in the UK.

Agriculture Secretary George Eustice said the government was preparing to expand the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program (SAWS) this year to help tackle the heavy truck crisis in the UK.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps suggested adding heavy truck drivers to the list of skilled workers for immigration purposes would not solve the problem, although he insisted nothing was wrong. had been excluded.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps suggested adding heavy truck drivers to the list of skilled workers for immigration purposes would not solve the problem, although he insisted nothing was wrong. had been excluded.

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