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Firm behind Irn Bru cautions on lorry driver issues

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AG Barr is behind the Irn Bru brand  (REUTERS)
AG Barr is behind the Irn Bru brand (REUTERS)

Irn Bru maker AG Barr has joined the list of businesses warning of driver issues, as firms continue to grapple with supply chain difficulties.

The drinks company, which is also behind the Rubicon brand, gave the update as it published first half results that showed improvements at AG Barr.

It said: “In recent weeks we have seen increased challenges across the UK road haulage fleet, associated in part with the Covid-19 pandemic, impacting customer deliveries and inbound materials.”

The firm added: “In addition, the risks associated with the wider labour pool and the current Covid-19 pandemic response are areas we continue to monitor closely. …We believe the commitment and capability of our workforce and supply base will stand us in good stead in these uncertain times.”

A combination of the ‘pingdemic’ causing disruption, driving test backlogs and some workers leaving the UK after Brexit has led to a major shortfall in HGV drivers. That coupled with shopping delays has caused disruption for a number of retailers and manufacturers.

AG Barr, led by Roger White, said revenues in the 27 weeks to August jumped 19.5% to £135.3 million and it posted a pre-tax profit of £24.4 million, up from £5.1 million.

Growth came in a period when the hospitality sector, part of which AG Barr sells its goods to, was able to reopen from the most-recent lockdown.

The company will recommence dividend payments.

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