Goole farmer facing 'looming crisis' as staff shortage hits industry

Credit: ITV Calendar News

After days of queues at petrol stations as panic buying caused pumps to run dry, farmers say they are now facing a 'looming' crisis because of the shortage of HGV drivers and staff.

The shortage of lorry drivers contributed to the frantic scenes of the last few days. The government has since put the Army on standby in case they were needed to make emergency deliveries to forecourts.

While there are signs that the crisis may be easing - the problem still continues for farmers.

In Goole, Guy Poskitt grows hundreds of thousands of carrots every year for some major retailers. Every year they grow fields upon fields of pumpkins, but he says he's now facing a 'crisis'.

The shortage of staff has also lead to scaling production back, from the fields, the packing factory and even deliveries.

''We're short on staff on the farms, we're short in the pack houses, we're short on drivers. we're so short on drivers, I've been driving the lorries myself.''

It's the perfect storm really, its a combination of Brexit, Covid, and there's a lot mroe industries willing to pay a lot more than our industry does.''

Guy believes paying more for staff will cause food inflation but said they cannot continue without a solution.

Farmers have reported a growing shortage of staff.

The British Growers Association said the issue is hitting farmers nationwide.

''Growers have been reporting shortages of labour and as the season has gone on it has got progressively worse and worse.

The government's Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, said it has listened to concerns and is acting to ''alleviate what is a very tight labour market.