Supply chain issues impacting businesses here in Georgia and beyond

ATLANTA — Nationwide supply chain issues are affecting everything from holiday decorations, car prices and especially food.

Brent Dixon has felt the impact of the shortages while running T&T Meats in both McDonough and Locust Grove.

“We try to treat everybody like family,” Brent Dixon said. “It’s just a bad scenario all the way around.”

That means meat is more expensive for everyone.

“It is causing us to lose a profit and then not only carry fewer products but have to increase the price on those products,” Brent Dixon said.

Food prices have been up 4.6% since September of last year, according to new data from the Department of Labor.

Meat, poultry, fish and egg prices are up nationally more than anything at 10%. So, what’s behind it all?

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Georgia Tech economics professor Tibor Besedes said the Los Angeles port is backed up with ships and shipping containers for a reason.

“This is a pretty extraordinary event,” Besedes said. “A lot of the goods are on the ships, rather than in stores. And so even when they get offloaded given the shortage of truck drivers, it takes longer to actually get them into stores and on shelves.”

We flew NewsDrone 2 over the Port of Savannah Wednesday, which showed a backlog in Georgia too.

The Port of Savannah has added nearly 400 workers in the past year, expanding its workforce to about 1,520, and is already working around the clock. The authority also has several huge projects underway that will add to its overall capacity.

Between 20 and 25 ships are anchored offshore in a queue, unable to dock until other ships are unloaded.

Besedes said he expects more backlog there as companies begin to look to avoid the larger California ports.

“If everybody starts going to other ports, congestion is going to hit those ports as well,” Besedes said.

At T&T Meats, they’re feeling the impact of a truck driver shortage too.

“There’s times that we’re waiting here, way after hours to receive product, and sometimes we’re not getting it,” said co-owner Angie Dixon.

It’s affected how often they can keep some meats in stock, but experts and the Dixons say now isn’t the time to start hoarding.

“I would stock up a little bit. Certainly, don’t go out and buy everything you can buy under the shelf and clean it out for the next person in line,” Angie Dixon said.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this article.

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