Stock shortage may happen if supply issues not resolved: Britannia

Britannia Industries has said continued impediments to supply of essential goods, amid the 21-day lockdown, will create a shortage of packaged food in the market over the next few days. The issue may prolong till everything, from warehousing to movement of trucks, and permits for manufacturing facilities is activated across the country.

The company has urged the government to ensure food processing is considered under essential category.

Currently, the food industry supply chain is disaggregated and dependent on inter-state movement of goods. This has caused a shortage of raw materials, and inventories across the chain, said Varun Berry, managing director, Britannia Industries.

“If even one link in supply chain is broken, country could run out of stocks of packaged food in the next 7-10 days,” Britannia Industries Managing Director Varun Berry said.

Even though on Wednesday the MHA moved to issue fresh guidelines that sought to allow exemptions on movement of people and services during the 21-day lockdown across more sectors, companies are still facing issues in pockets, where the movement of transportation remains a challenge.

Berry said it is “imperative that the supply chain for food products be restored in entirety and allowed to function with adequate safety measures and police protection.”

Varun Berry said that to ensure smooth functioning and availability of stocks in the markets, necessary permits need to be immediately issued for all the service providers to packaged foods industry.