Northwest Arkansas businesses impacted by supply chain delays


FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Across the globe, supply chains that move goods from place to place have slowed down or entirely stopped. This is impacting Northwest Arkansas businesses, and owners are making different decisions based on the likelihood they won’t have needed materials.

University of Arkansas economist Jeff Cooperstein said the pandemic’s impacted how quickly and efficiently items and parts can be shipped. Factory shutdowns across the world impact the final destination for where created products end up.

“The supply chain issues are the fact that it’s not delivering in the speed and variety we’re used to in the past,” Cooperstein said.

With fewer products, inflation numbers have also increased. Cooperstein said supply chains are also to blame.

“They’ve got lots of product out there that’s not getting where it needs to go,” Cooperstein said.

People will see the result in grocery stores not having a full stock, electronics stores having empty shelves and other areas.

On Dickson Street in Fayetteville, the Campus Bookstore is a go-to spot for Razorback merchandise. Fans haven’t been able to get all the products they’ve wanted, or they find products gone from shelves if they want to purchase certain items.

“Apparel, t-shirts, sweat shirts, any items, really,” said Jimmie Cooke, the manager for Campus Bookstore. “People are seeing these shortages all throughout the country.”

Cooke said the Campus Bookstore has turned to local businesses to help make up for the missed items on backorder.

Pearl’s Books just opened in Fayetteville at the beginning of October.

“We’re pretty new, so we’re still figuring it out,” said Leah Jordan, co-owner of Pearl’s Books. “It’s definitely given us pause as we’re going into the holiday season.”

Jordan said starting an independent business is already difficult, but supply chain issues don’t make anything easier.

“We’re just trying to prepare as best we can,” Jordan said. “We just keep hearing about books, especially, because of the lack of paper.”

Jordan said she doesn’t have all the answers, but ordering ahead may be the way to go for businesses and customers.

“We are trying to keep on top of things and let people know if a book’s not going to come in as expected or we expected,” Jordan said.

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