Ky. Retail Federation warns of supply chain shortages, encourages people to start holiday shopping early


LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56/WKYT) – Thanksgiving is just 38, and right after starts the traditional rush of holiday shopping.

Retail experts are saying if you wait until then, it may be too late. That’s why they’re warning shoppers to start early.

Shoppers in Lexington told us they normally don’t begin the Christmas shopping until November, but they admitted shipping issues around the rest of the world have them rethinking that timeline.

One shopper, Debra Fisher, said she normally waits to do her shopping for the holidays, a little closer to Thanksgiving, but this year, she hopes to start before Halloween.

“We only have what, a couple weeks. Most definitely,” Fisher said.

Shoppers who have already started said, they realized if they didn’t make some orders before Black Friday, they might not end up under the tree.

“I’ve ordered quite a few items off of Amazon. And the ship date on a lot of toys are like, November 29 and so it’s really, really scary to think that people are trying to order online and get their Christmas gifts and it’s going to be like a very late date for them to arrive,” shopper Debbie Henry said.

The Kentucky Retail Federation said shopping early should be a priority. The supply chain crisis has moved from factories in China, to the ports in the US.

“What happened now is, the ports are backed up. New Orleans, Los Angeles. New York. They’re backed up where they have a lot of containers that are stacked up in the ports and there’s not enough truck drivers right now to kind of get those containers unloaded and moved across the country,” said Steve McClain with the Kentucky Retail Federation.

McClain said they aren’t expecting food shortages, but some items might be harder to come by.

“If there is something that you have every year it’s kind of a family tradition, again you might want to go ahead and get those items you need for the special recipes,” McClain said.

As for when things might return to normal, we may be ringing in the new year, with the crisis ongoing.

“The Transportation Secretary Buttigieg said over the weekend it could take until sometime next year to get that sorted out,” McClain said.

Some shoppers told WKYT they’ve already finished all of their holiday shopping, and there was one couple who said they were just going to send cash to their grandkids.

McClain said this is a good opportunity to spend more money locally, whether that’s from boutique gift shops, or gift cards to local restaurants. But he said even some of them have had issues getting their supplies because of that shipping crisis.

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