Kiwis advised to stock up due to supply shortages

Kiwis have been advised to stock up with supply shortages expected to continue well into Christmas and beyond, according to a supply chain management expert.

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Supply chain specialist David Robb on what it means for the top of the country. Source: Seven Sharp

While most of the country tucks into takeaways, Auckland and Northland remain at Level 4, with Northland expected to join the rest of the country at Level 3 from 11.59pm on Thursday.

University of Auckland professor of operations and supply chain management, David Robb, told Seven Sharp the split in alert levels between Auckland and Northland from the rest of the country is "okay at the moment" despite a "minor issue" with freight entering Auckland.

Robb said a "much broader issue" is facilities remaining "vulnerable" under Level 4.

"We've got non-essential workers, for example, isolating; there's possibilities that operations won't be able to continue; we've also got facilities that aren't operating so we're vulnerable."

Robb said we may see shortages "well into next year, possibly the year beyond", which are bound to affect Christmas plans.

"Right now, we don't know exactly what products and when and where and how long it will last, but we know some candidates," he said. 

Among the items people may want to stock up on include imported goods, baking ingredients, plastic packaging, consumable items and "dare I say it - toilet paper - we're currently running out".

"If you want to have a bit more choice for Christmas, you might want to get in a bit early but before December."

He advised people to have "just a bit more patience" and "maybe order a little bit more at the start and holding those".

"I think we need to assume this is going to go on for several years and just hold a bit more product in our households."

Professor David Robb. Source: Seven Sharp