The Ever Given’s blockage of the Suez Canal earlier this month caused reverberating effects through the shipping industry. Gardeners in the UK are hunkering down as supply chain delays are causing a shortage of the essentials, like garden gnomes.
Even though the Ever Given is no longer blocking the Canal (though it is still sitting in the Canal while Egypt waits for its owner to pony up $1 billion) the impact of the six-day blockage is still being felt worldwide. As Business Insider reports, ships are piling up at ports worldwide that were already dealing heavy traffic even before the Ever Given fiasco. Transportation of everything from cars, to oil, to even sex toys are getting hung up.
For the UK, this means enthusiastic gardeners are going to have to make their green spaces work without a key feature. Manufacturers of the popular garden ornament just cannot keep up with demand, reports Indy100:
Ian Wylie, CEO of the Garden Centre Association described the situation.
“With goods arriving from abroad, garden centres were affected by the ship getting stuck in the canal as much as any other industry. Garden furniture, ornaments, of which gnomes would be some, being stuck in containers trying to come over here”
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UK residents find gardening to be a relaxing escape from lockdowns, reports the Guardian and this has resulted in an explosion in gnome demand.
It was already hard to find them before the Ever Given shut down the Suez Canal, but now it’s even harder as those manufacturers aren’t getting raw materials on time.
Some people haven’t seen a gnome in six months (the horror) from Guardian:
Ian Byrne, assistant manager of Highfield Garden World in Whitminster, Gloucestershire, said there had been a “massive upswing” in the sales of garden gnomes. “We haven’t seen a gnome in six months now, unfortunately,” he said.
The blockage’s ripple effects are expected to be felt deep into May, reports Business Insider. So if you’re waiting for something to arrive at port, or gnomes to build a garden, you may have to wait a bit.