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Supply Chain Graphic of the Week: Retail out of Stocks Remain High in Many Categories 

 

Lean Inventory and Capacity Strategies by Manufactuers is Key Factor

 

Aug. 28  2020

Five months after the start of the coronavirus outbreak in the US, retail stores are still struggling to keep store shelves stocked in many categories, as demand remains very high.

 

As show in the chart below from the Wall Street Journal, based on data from IRI, paper products such as paper towels remain in very short supply, out of stock 21% of the time right now, versus 5-7% in normal times.

 

 

 

Source: Wall Street Journal

 

Many other categories also have in-stock issues.

 

A key factor: lean inventory and capacity strategies by consumer goods manufacturers, which simply do not have the ability to increase supply to match the 15-25% growth or more in demand.   

 

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