The sharp rise in home deliveries is soon set to lead to a national cardboard shortage, which will cause massive disruption in the transport of food and medicine.
The Recycling Association (TRA) has said the looming cardboard shortage is of “huge concern”, stating that if “we can’t make cardboard boxes, everything stops”.
This shortage is due to both the sharp rise in home deliveries and local authorities increasingly scaling back and evening suspending collection in some areas during the outbreak.
Without recycled cardboard and paper, manufacturers are facing a shortage of fibre, which is used to produce new cardboard boxes essential for transporting food and medicine.
Furthermore, the shut down of retailers like Primark, John Lewis, Argos and B&Q have cut off a huge supply of recycled cardboard goods used to produce fibre.
READ MORE: Online grocery services: Which should I try?
“Of huge concern to us is the signs that Europe is already becoming short of fibre with which to make cardboard boxes,” TRA’s chief executive Simon Ellin said.
“Food and medical supplies all move by cardboard box and if we can’t make cardboard boxes, everything stops. If councils stop collecting recycling, and many are, all this fibre is burnt or goes to landfill and we will be short.”
Germany, which usually sources fibre from Poland, has now been forced to seek material from the UK and France while the Germany-Poland border is shut as it struggles with distribution roadblocks.