Over half of Britons have experienced food shortages in the last few weeks in their local supermarket or shop, according to a new report by YouGov.
In a survey of 3564 adults, 56 per cent said they had experienced shortages, whilst 39 per cent of people said they had not.
According to the survey, five per cent of people said they did not know whether or not they faced shortages.
These shortages have most been noticed by those in Scotland (67 per cent), as well as the majority of those in the rest of the South (57 per cent), Midlands/Wales (55 per cent) and the North (56 per cent).
Londoners are the least likely to have seen shortages (46 per cent).
The news comes as the boss of the Co-op said that supermarket shortages are now at a “worse level” than he had ever seen.
Co-op chief executive Steve Murrells said the chain had been forced to cut down on products as it struggled to get deliveries.
This comes as food and drink organisations have warned that the sector faces an employment crisis, with businesses in jeopardy and the risk of significant disruption over Christmas.
In a plea to the Scottish and UK governments for “immediate help”, representatives for the Scottish food and drink industry have said that recruitment problems caused by Brexit and the pandemic mean the sector is “rapidly approaching a crisis”.
“Government cannot ignore the flashing warning signs here. Businesses are doing everything they can to attract workers, but we desperately need government intervention now to avert a crisis,” CEO of Scotland Food & Drink James Withers said.
“From farms to manufacturers, and fishing boats to hauliers, we simply do not have the workforce to keep Scotland and the UK’s food supply chain fully functioning.
“Whether it is supermarkets and restaurants or care homes and hospitals, the government must not underestimate the risk of inaction.