Asda unveils plan to save Christmas: Retail giant charters its own cargo ship to ‘navigate supply chain issues’ and buys extra turkeys and pigs in blankets to sure up stocks in run up to Dec 25
The retail giant’s plan to save Christmas comes as it reported a dip in sales for the third quarter of 2021, as demand for online food deliveries waned slightly.
But Asda is among the supermarket chains who are expecting a strong festive period after celebrations were marred by Covid-19 and travel restrictions last year.
Investors were told by the retailer on Monday that it is ‘successfully navigating the industry-wide supply chain challenges’ and that the company had made early preparations to ensure shelves were stocked.
Their preparations include increasing the amount of turkeys and pigs in blankets in shops as well as getting extra festive products including mince pies, sweets, Christmas cakes and puddings at depots.
Asda has chartered its own cargo ship to ‘navigate supply chain issues’ and bought extra turkeys and pigs in blankets in a bid to sure up stocks in the run up to Christmas Day (file image)
Asda was bought by billionaire Issa brothers and private equity backers TDR Capital last year.
It has also chartered its own cargo ship to ensure products key to the festive season such as decorations and toys are delivered.
The company has also taken on 15,000 extra temporary staff to deal with an expected rise in demand from shoppers.
The retail giant is currently operating without a chief exec after Roger Burnley left the firm earlier this year.
The company has also taken on 15,000 extra temporary staff to deal with an expected rise in demand from shoppers (stock image)
It also said like-for-like sales excluding fuel declined by 0.7 per cent in the quarter to September compared to the same period last year.
But like-for-like sales remained two per cent higher than the same quarter in 2019.
Asda has been affected by a softening of online demand, with digital sales falling by 2.7 per cent.
The company also told investors that the expansion of its Asda On The Move operation has continued.
Asda has increased the amount of turkeys and pigs in blankets in shops as well as getting extra festive products including mince pies, sweets, Christmas cakes and puddings at depots
There have been 30 convenience store sites opened on the EG Group forecourts.
In a joint statement, Mohsin and Zuber Issa said: ‘Looking ahead, our plans to roll out Asda On The Move remain firmly on track and will open up significant growth opportunities in the convenience channel.
‘We are also highly encouraged by the early uptake of our Asda Rewards loyalty programme and look forward to bringing this trial to customers in more stores next year.’