Author Topic: Is there an actual "Pingdemic" or are we all getting shafted by Brexit?  (Read 6787 times)

Barry Admin

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Anyone know? Was just talking to a guy who works in retail, and he says the quality of stuff has gone right downhill of late.

Is this "Pingdemic" a load of shit that's covering up for Brexit-based problems?

Big Mclargehuge

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Mainly brexit, but COVID is also a factor from what I can see. it was pitched best to me by someone I follow on twitter who said that, given that a more than decent chunk of our food supply relies on European imports what truck drivers in their right mind are going to A: sit at the port for 15-17+ hours waiting to get into and out of the UK and B: are going to want to come to a literal plague island. I'd say Brexit is probably the more dominant force in this. But the idea that fleets of drivers are self isolating because they've been repeatedly pinged by an oversensitive app is a pure and total media spun fiction.

Fambo Number Mive

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I agree with BigMclargehuge but I was wondering, once they ease isolation rules for the double jabbed on August 16th and we still see a shortage of items, won't they need to find another reason that isn't Brexit to blame for the shortage of lorry drivers? Will they try and get Army personnel with HGV licences (if there are any) to drive the trucks? Or try and force unemployed people into these roles?

Big Mclargehuge

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I agree with BigMclargehuge but I was wondering, once they ease isolation rules for the double jabbed on August 16th and we still see a shortage of items, won't they need to find another reason that isn't Brexit to blame for the shortage of lorry drivers? Will they try and get Army personnel with HGV licences (if there are any) to drive the trucks? Or try and force unemployed people into these roles?

My guess is they're weighing up their best option for spin:

*If cases get super bad, they can try and play it out that the EU are being unreasonable and restricting drivers access due to covid concerns
*theres already some supermarkets using advertisements printed on long cardboard boxes to fill empty shelves in isles to give the impression that isles are fuller than they are. Techniques like that and more may get wheeled out more if things get worse
*They could be actively building a stockpile right now to make delays look not quite as bad in time for the 16th
*it could be all of the above.

I honestly wouldnt put it past them to draft the army into helping out. you can already picture the front covers of the mail and the scum with "ARR BRAVE BOIS 'ELPIN THE NATION!" plastered all over them as some squaddies hang out of a Morrisons delivery truck.

The only certainty there is really is that the tories will absolutely deny food shortages are anything to do with them.

PlanktonSideburns

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Load of rotting pork getting ragged down the M4 by a PDSD man child in a badly converted army van

Byline says it's deffo Brexit: https://bylinetimes.com/2021/07/22/a-convenient-scapegoat-empty-shelves-are-due-to-brexit-not-the-pingdemic-heres-the-evidence/

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As the images of empty supermarket shelves across Britain skyrocket, elements of the right-wing media have taken to blaming the so-called ‘pingdemic’.

The narrative emerging is that supply and labour shortages – which have previously been blamed on Brexit – are instead the result of an overzealous ‘Test and Trace’ system; a hallmark of our illiberal, authoritarian response to the Coronavirus pandemic and nothing to do with Britain’s departure from the EU.

The reality is very different.

For the past month, I’ve travelled the length and breadth of the UK – more than 1,500 miles in total – hearing first-hand the stories of the havoc that has been wreaked on leave and remain voters alike, as part of an ongoing Byline TV series about the repercussions of Brexit for farmers, fishermen, hauliers and retailers.

At first, individual business owners spoke of facing issues with exporting due to the paperwork created overnight by the UK’s change in customs status or struggling to find a market within the UK to make up for lost trade to the EU. Lorry drivers and shipping managers began to warn that we would see empty supermarket shelves because of a disastrous mix of new customs regulations and a lack of drivers as EU workers left the UK.

At a truck stop just off the M4, I spoke to Laura Salt, operations manager at Steve Fellows Road Haulage Service, a Staffordshire logistics firm that supplies several UK supermarkets. “It’s been a nightmare to get drivers,” she said, “we’ve had a lot of European drivers go back due to paperwork, it’s just a lot easier to go back. It’s causing chaos. Recently we’ve been having to say that we can’t cover the runs, can’t make the delivery. Before Brexit, it would never have happened.”


New customs and travel rules have exacerbated the pressure on staff rotas, with international drivers taken out of action by vastly increased waits at customs.

“Where a a job used to turn around in five days, it’s now becoming over a week,” she added. “You never know how long it’s going to take a shipment just to clear customs… the record is five days.”

Steve Burgess, a truck driver from Kent, compared the pre-Brexit customs process to the “long headache” drivers like him are now facing.

“Before Brexit, when a trailer came off the ferry we could pick it up and go straight away,” he told Byline TV. “Now, it has to come off the ferry and then await customs clearance. I’ve been sat there for three hours waiting, some of my colleagues have lost a whole day.” He pointed out that all the extra hours add up and result in expensive delays at the other end of the supply chain.

Shane Brennan, CEO of The Cold Chain Federation in Reading, leads the representative membership organisation for companies that store temperature-controlled food and other goods in the UK. He spends the majority of his time dealing with immediate crises, particularly around Brexit.

“I think businesses across the supply chain are frustrated that the evidence is that there hasn’t been a clear plan for how to maintain supplies through what has been a chaotic exit of the EU,” he said – placing the blame squarely on Brexit.

This was a sentiment echoed by Graham Pask, south-east manager for the Road Haulage Association. “Nobody, not even the Government, fully understood the costs involved with exporting and importing from Europe,” he said.

Everyone affected stressed that there appears to be no fix for these issues in the near future – regardless of the Coronavirus.

Liz Webster, a Wiltshire farmer who sells meat to Marks & Spencer, has said that while the pandemic has undoubtedly been a contributing factor, these issues began with Brexit – not the ‘pingdemic’.

“[The right-wing media] are trying to scapegoat the blame onto the Test and Trace ping system because they want to deflect the blame from Brexit,” she said today. “It’s a convenient scapegoat. The real problem at the heart of food shortages is Brexit. That’s it. No other country is having these issues. Supermarkets in France and Ireland are having no food shortages.”

It isn’t just supermarkets either. Pubs and restaurants everywhere are feeling the knock-on effects of the disruption caused by Brexit.

John Hamilton, a nightclub owner in Manchester’s Gay Village, said that he was able to successfully adapt to keep his business open despite the pandemic – but that the shortages he is experiencing are the consequences of Brexit.


“There’s a shortage of beer, certain products of beer,” he said. “The lorries can only come in at certain times and sometimes they don’t even come. I’ve got five pumps and one of those beers I can’t even stock because there isn’t any there… it’s an absolute cock-up.”

On top of goods, he is also facing staff shortages, which like Laura Salt, he puts down to a dearth of EU migrant workers – a demographic which the hospitality sector has traditionally relied on.

Speaking to these business owners, managers and labourers, it is clear that in spite of the difficulties the pandemic has forced upon them, it is Brexit which is the major source of their woes. These are professionals who live and work every day on various stages of the supply chain – they know better than anyone the issues they face and their cause.

So, when they say that Brexit has resulted in empty shelves, I think we had better believe them.

Milo

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For the app to be responsible we'd have to assume a load of fairly comfortable workers who will be paid while they isolate. I'd be amazed if there's a single lorry driver in the country who would either have the app or pay attention to it while it's on.

(I've recently installed it because I will get paid and can't really work from home and I'm so tired)

Barry Admin

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Byline says it's deffo Brexit: https://bylinetimes.com/2021/07/22/a-convenient-scapegoat-empty-shelves-are-due-to-brexit-not-the-pingdemic-heres-the-evidence/


Thanks for posting that, very interesting, and makes much more sense.

The guy in retail I spoke to said the potatoes and stuff were trash of late, and that they were having to dump loads of them a lot sooner than they usually would have to. Which I guess likely indicates that stuff is getting stuck in customs, as indicated above. (Can't remember if the NI protocol would contradict this or not.)

And yeah, as mentioned in that article, we were specifically told there would be empty shelves and foot shortages!

I'm convinced. Bullshit story, and only Byline calling it out?

I often wonder if they would last if they were caked in mud like old school potatoes you'd used to get in a sack.

Shoulders?-Stomach!

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https://twitter.com/BylineTV/status/1418213425260294156?s=19

When fantasy is confronted by reality. Also he can't find people to work on minimum wage, his business can't operate without being able to pay the bare minimum, what a guy

Shoulders?-Stomach!

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Load of rotting pork getting ragged down the M4 by a PDSD man child in a badly converted army van

Got a hard on at this, cheers

SpiderChrist

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https://twitter.com/BylineTV/status/1418213425260294156?s=19

When fantasy is confronted by reality. Also he can't find people to work on minimum wage, his business can't operate without being able to pay the bare minimum, what a guy

“It’s an absolute cock up.”

Well, no it’s not. It’s what a lot of people said would happen. And cunts like him dismissed it as “Project Fear”. Fuck him.

Fambo Number Mive

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"I voted as a businessman"

bakabaka

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"I voted as a businessman"
Then goes on to say that as a person now he would vote Remain, which implies that as a businessman he would still vote Leave despite it being his business that it has ruined, not his personal life (unless his partner was forrin or something, but that's not mentioned so not relevant, presumably).

Never admit defeat or to being wrong, even while doing so.

Fambo Number Mive

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I suspect he is a Tory voter as well.

DrGreggles

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And his beer selection is shit. What an all-round cunt!

Pink Gregory

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And so it follows that businessmen aren't people.

Yes, correct.

Barry Admin

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Slap it up the cunt.

“I voted for Brexit as a businessman.”
“But don’t you run a business that heavily relies on EU labour and imports?”
“……………”

English lager's improved but we still can't get Kölsch right.

Noticed Sainsburys was out of beer this morning. Only time I remember that happening before was March last year.

Neomod

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My local area must be tres middle class. No fizzy water anywhere in Sainsburys, Tesco and LIDL.

Shelves appear to be well stocked otherwise.

Cuellar

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"I voted as a businessman...and now it's hit my business"

Cretin.

H-O-W-L

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There's a legitimate upswing in cases and it's hitting America and China in supply terms, along with the Continent, and we're feeling the aftershocks of it alongside the "pingdemic". You know, and Brexit.

Barry Admin

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Hadn't really considered it might be a combination, I think. Here's what I said yesterday in another thread:

My Mum's been telling me today about the calls going out from the hospitals here. Two of them are asking extra staff to come in, and she says it's the first time she's seen that in ages. Everyone getting dressed up in full PPE again too.

Ahh yeah, state media
 reporting it now too
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-57968664

Whereas I just went there to confirm that I'd been seeing a lot of "it's all getting a lot better" stories.

George Oscar Bluth II

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Only thing my local supermarket was out of was Pot Noodles. Just a massive gap where they are normally with like two left. But you suspect if truck space is limited desolate shit like the Pot Noodle is the first to go right?

"I wouldn't vote Brexit ever again"

Being born was traumatic. I'm never doing that again.

Both Tesco and Asda near me have, in the last month or so, suddenly rearranged the food aisles by removing at least one entirely. So that’s one way to have less empty shelves.

Great (genuinely) twitter thread about the logistics of all this and the decisions hauliers and supermarkets have to make about what to prioritise (cheap booze, it turns out): https://twitter.com/garius/status/1419573124589309956

Quote
What Johnson and co. haven't realised is that supermarket supply management is starting to prioritise core goods as the crisis deepens with road haulage.

If you start noticing a lack of booze on supermarket shelves this is why.

And a UK booze shortage will be harder to dismiss.

monkfromhavana

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It will be quite funny as the right-wing attempt to play this, with their main target, Muslims, out of play.

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