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Pen-demonium Penneys sees 'supply chain disruption' ahead of busy Christmas period

It said it was “closely managing” the situation and is using its large warehouses to prioritise “the product most in demand” as the festive season approaches.

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Penneys (Stock image)

Penneys (Stock image)

Penneys (Stock image)

Penneys may have limited stock this Christmas as the company has been experiencing “supply chain disruption” in recent weeks.

Associated British Foods (ABF) said that temporary closures at dispatch ports, limited sea container availability, and congestion at destination ports could mean that some product lines may be in short supply.

These disruptions have delayed the handover of stock from suppliers and the delivery of this stock into stores, the group said.

It said it was “closely managing” the situation and is using its large warehouses to prioritise “the product most in demand” as the festive season approaches.

“Although, at this point, the disruption is causing limited availability on a small number of lines, our warehouse inventories give us stock cover on the majority of lines for the important Christmas trading period,” ABF said in a statement today.

ABF chief George Weston added that supply chains have been “difficult” but he expects Christmas to “be good” for trading.

Despite the current supply chain issues and soaring costs, shoppers will be pleased to hear that Penneys - which uses the trading name Primark outside of Ireland - will not be raising its prices this winter.

“We haven’t increased prices at Primark over the past 10 years and we won’t do so this year,” Mr Weston told PA Media.

“We have currency difference in our favour and there are other areas we have recognised to find cost savings so won’t pass that on.”

However, Mr Weston said that ABF has already raised prices in some of its grocery chains, such as Ryvita, Twinings, and Kingsmill, to make up for rising energy and distribution costs.

“In food we are having to pass some of the impact on to customers because it’s just too big to absorb.

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“Energy prices have shot up, with natural gas trebling. Distribution costs have risen, labour costs have risen - it seems like everything is jumping up right now.”

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