The hashtag #EmptyShelvesJoe was one of the hottest trends across Twitter Thursday as people en masse are waking up to the fact that international supply chains are clogged, and shortages have resulted in empty store shelves at their local retailer.
The hashtag, number one in the US on Thursday, comes one day after President Biden issued a port directive to operate 24/7 to alleviate snarled supply chains. But the move to have Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, a point of entry for 40% of all US containerized goods, work in hyperdrive to alleviate congestion is “too little, too late” to save Christmas, said one top toymaker.
Earlier this week, 80 container ships are at anchor and 64 at berths across the twin ports. The backlog doesn’t stop there as it takes well more than a week for entry into the port. Once the containers are unloaded, it takes another week to leave the port to warehouses.
Those tweeting the hashtag placed most of the blame on Biden and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg for their inability to normalize supply chains as congestion creates shortages of consumer goods and rapid inflation.
An aerial visual of the backlog at the Port of Los Angeles shows tens of thousands of containers are sitting dockside. Some have said it’s the lack of truck drivers that have resulted in delays.