Do your holiday shopping now, toy executive says, as port congestion continues in California – Times-Herald

Between the uncertainty of coronavirus variants and the ongoing supply chain congestion, people may want to jump into their holiday shopping earlier this year.

It was from the Port of Los Angeles, where container ships wait days outside the complex, and from a major retailer on Wednesday, September 15.

“Buy toys now,” said Eddesmond, Executive Vice President of the Toy Association. “If you find a toy that your kids want for Christmas, pick it up now and store it securely. Currently, the store has a fairly healthy supply. I don’t know what will happen as Christmas approaches. Hmm.”

Desmond’s remarks were made at a monthly online press conference by Secretary-General Gene Seroka of the Port of Los Angeles to provide up-to-date information on an unprecedented and record-breaking cargo surge over several months.

However, the August figures for the Port of Los Angeles fell 0.8%, slightly below the record set in August 2020.

Last month, the port processed units worth 954,377 20 feet, a standard measured container size.

Imports in August 2021 fell 6% from August of the previous year, according to Seloka. This is mainly due to retailers a year ago trying to replenish empty shelves after the first few months of the pandemic and blockade.

Long Beach Port moved 807,704 TEU in August. This is an increase of 11.3% compared to the same month in 2020. This was the highest August on record for the port.

Cargo surges are also expected to continue until 2022, thanks to the continued trend of online purchases that have skyrocketed in the last few months, according to Seloka.

However, the surge has created logistical challenges.

There were 146 vessels in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach on Wednesday, according to figures provided by the Southern California Marine Exchange. This broke the previous record of 142, the previous day’s setting.

88 of them were in the anchor or drift area waiting for berth allocation for unloading. The trend is expected to be stable or slightly diminishing.

According to Seloka, the port processed 16 vessels a day in August.

Freighters continue to be congested at Los Angeles Harbor and Long Beach as peak holiday shipments are underway, as seen from San Pedro’s LA Harbor / Marine Exchange on Wednesday, September 15, 2021. (Photo courtesy of Brittany Murray, Press-Telegram / SCNG)

Mario Cordero, Executive Secretary of Port of Long Beach, said a week ago that both ports need to continue to adapt to ongoing consumer demand that requires careful monitoring of port efficiency and port customer costs. Said.

Jonathan Gold, vice president of supply chain and customs policy at the National Retail Federation, said the organization’s holiday outlook will not be announced for weeks.

However, he said early holiday shopping is planned for this year.

Meanwhile, Desmond said more face-to-face shopping is expected compared to the 2020 holidays when the country was in the midst of a deadly winter surge in coronavirus.

Gold agreed.

“The economy is in a very different situation than last year as things have recovered,” Gold said.

Port congestion will continue to be a challenge, according to Gold.

“The challenge was to expand the entire supply chain,” he said in a telephone interview on Wednesday, September 15.

Retailers’ mitigation plans include shipping faster than usual, considering alternative routes and ports, and even considering expensive options for air freight.

From berths and worker availability to trucks, railroads, terminals and warehouse spaces, the entire supply chain is affected by the surge in freight, Gold said.

“There is no silver bullet to fix everything,” he said.

Meanwhile, retailers are trying to avoid shortages before vacation.

For example, Target Corporation chartered a container ship as one of the options to ensure that goods arrive on time, a spokeswoman for a popular shopping chain said.

A representative of The Home Depot said holiday decorations will be up in the coming weeks.

“I think there is still a lot of uncertainty in the pandemic and the supply chain itself,” Gold said. “But I think people want to celebrate.

“It was a challenge,” he added, “but retailers are stepping up and ready for what’s coming next.”

Another megachain, Wal-Mart, has decided to do what Desmond recommends shoppers do — get the goods fast.

Scott Pope, Wal-Mart’s Senior Director of Global Communications, said: “Many of them were transferred to charter vessels through less crowded ports, which has proven to be effective.”

The Pope said in an email that port congestion was a factor as it could affect inventories.

“But we report that inventories in the second quarter were higher than they were a year ago, and we hope that inventories will continue to improve,” he said. “But we are happy with the position of the inventory for the holidays.”

However, SMEs are facing greater challenges, said Desmond, who said container prices for companies not operating under an annual contract are skyrocketing.

“We’re looking at all possible solutions in the coming months to put our products on the shelves of these stores,” said Desmond, who may have fewer variations to choose from later in the season. I added that there is.

Consumers who buy toys online need to carefully check their safety information as they have imitations of popular products, he said.

“One of the changes we see is more people shopping at retail stores,” says Desmond.

Desmond also said that almost all of the most popular toy categories, such as action figures, are currently available and price increases are “minor.”

“Now is the best time to buy toys,” said Desmond. “I hope that in the near future, the toys will appear on the shelves and you will find what you are looking for.”

Do your holiday shopping now, toy executive says, as port congestion continues in California – Times-Herald Source link Do your holiday shopping now, toy executive says, as port congestion continues in California – Times-Herald

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