The picture that reveals Bunnings’ secret battle – Warehouse giant facing crisis after bushfires and pandemic led to nation-wide shortage of essential material
- Bunnings is facing a crisis after bushfires and Covid led to a shortage of timber
- The hardware giant’s customers have turned their frustration to staff
- An ‘unprecedented demand’ for timber wreaked havoc on Bunnings’ inventory
Bunnings Warehouse is facing a worsening crisis after the 2019/20 bushfires and the Covid pandemic led to a nation-wide shortage of timber.
The hardware giant’s customers have turned their frustration to staff over the issue which could last up to six months and has caused lengthy delays in construction times on new homes.
Startling photos of bare shelves in the timber aisles of Bunnings stores in the Melbourne suburbs of Maribyrnong and Croydon have laid bare the dire effects of the shortage.
The timber scarcity has left desperate tradies and families building their dream home without any vital materials.
Bunnings is facing a timber crisis after the 2019/20 bushfires and global pandemic led to a shortage (pictured – empty shelves at the Maribyrnong Bunnings in Melbourne)
Startling photos of bare shelves in the timber aisles of Bunnings stores in the Melbourne suburbs of Maribyrnong and Croydon (pictured) have laid bare the dire effects of the shortage
Since the pandemic began in March last year, an ‘unprecedented demand’ for timber products has wreaked havoc on Bunnings’ rapidly dwindling inventory.
Bunnings claims the increased need for timber is partly due to people spending more time at home fixing up their homes, as well as government building grants incentivising land buyers to build from scratch.
‘We know constraints are causing some frustrations for people across the industry,’ Bunnings’ merchandise general manager Toby Watson told the Herald Sun.
‘The vast majority of our customers have been understanding and we support our team if they face any challenging conversations and take a zero-tolerance approach to inappropriate behaviour.’
Mr Watson said the hardware chain is working with its Suppliers and Trade customers to predict demand and ‘plan earlier in the build process so we have additional time to manage orders’.
Housing Industry of Australia chief economist Tim Reardon said the shortage, which could last until the end of 2021, was caused in part by the federal government’s HomeBuilder scheme coupled with an increased overseas demand for timber.
Mr Reardon said shipping container prices doubling the past year only added to the already-dire situation.
The hardware giant’s customers have come to blows with staff over the issue which could last up to six months and has caused lengthy delays in construction times on new homes
Since the pandemic began in March last year, an ‘unprecedented demand’ for timber products has wreaked havoc on Bunnings’ rapidly dwindling inventory
It could leave Australians building a new home waiting an extra six to eight weeks for completion, while delaying those undergoing renovations.
Australia’s devastating 2019/20 bushfire season has also played a role in the shortage, after infernos destroyed a fifth of the nation’s forests.
The bushfires raged for months and set vast swathes of land ablaze, destroying homes, killing around half a billion animals and taking the lives of 33 people.
The 5.8 million hectares of charred land accounts for roughly 21 percent of Australia’s forested area.
Average annual forest loss in Australia due to fire is around two percent.