LANDOVER, Md. -- The truck driver strike at Giant Food here has caused stock shortages -- particularly of private-label items -- in all 174 of its stores.
Some of Giant's private-label grocery items have been unavailable because the union members are drivers for Giant's distribution centers and private-label vendors, according to Barry Scher, chain spokesman.
Though there have been spot depletions of national brands as well, all categories are still available, Scher said.
"We don't have the wide variety of product we traditionally have, but all categories are represented within our stores," he said.
Center Store appears to be hardest hit by the strike, which was not settled as of early last week. "The produce, meat, deli, seafood and bakery departments are in excellent condition. But the grocery department has some shortages in the variety we usually offer," Scher said.
For instance, instead of offering 10 different types of facial tissues, stores may carry only five, Scher said.
The stalemate is a topic of discussion on the Internet. In a local news group web site, one person wrote that he noticed a shortage on some of Giant's store brands. Another shopper said a number of shelf-stable bread products were missing.
In an informal SN telephone poll of several Leesburg, Va., Giant shoppers, most said they experienced few or no problems. One consumer who shops Giant four or five times a week said he noticed one shortage: Quibell bottled water.