OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – The domino effect of pandemic shortages is impacting local businesses and restaurants in the Omaha metro.
The food is ready to be delivered but there is not enough staff to bring it to the kitchens.
âLiterally I feel like every day I have a problem with something coming up, my order isn’t submitted, my truck literally doesn’t arrive here,â said Dana Zurlo, Managing Director of Sgt. Peffer’s.
Food delivery companies like Sysco are falling behind on local deliveries due to what the company calls “unprecedented labor shortages.” For places like Sgt. Peffer’s, this is causing major setbacks.
âIt’s just incredibly frustrating and I can’t control it, you know, I can’t control Sysco, I can’t control people, you know, so it’s just for me, for my staff. It’s just really frustrating.
In a statement to 6 News, a spokesperson for Sysco said the company “is aggressively recruiting delivery partners and warehouse associates.” Zurlo says she hopes this will happen soon, so she doesn’t have to keep looking for food for her restaurant in local grocery stores.
“For me, having to go to Restaurant Depot, it takes a long time for me to be here and we’re already short of staff, so it’s like trying to hurry out to get some food.” , even Family Fare, some grocery stores, whatever, âshe says. “I’m just trying to do everything I can to keep running my business.”
Zurlo says she even had to travel to Lincoln in her spare time to pick up her deliveries on her own. Although you are a long-time Sysco customer, if the trend continues it may be time for a change, especially when other local businesses are not having the same issues.
“It’s just, it’s exhausting, I didn’t wink last night because I don’t know what I’m going to do if I don’t get my truck back today, you know” , she says. “We wouldn’t if we didn’t like it, but there comes a time when it feels like maybe I should look elsewhere, you know because I have to have my food.”
Sysco’s full statement to 6 News:
âSysco regrets having had to delay or suspend service for a limited number of customers in various locations. This is mainly due to unprecedented labor shortages in the industry. We are aggressively recruiting delivery partners and warehouse associates, and our goal is to restore service to our affected customers as soon as possible. We apologize for the inconvenience caused to our customers. We expect this to be a temporary situation. “
Sysco also provided a link to the letter they sent to clients recently.
The company also says it has launched a Sysco driving academy to help recruit and train drivers.
âWe will be better able to source drivers from our own population of warehouse associates and train them to be drivers through this unique industry program. We will pay interns to attend our academy, we will cover all their licensing and certification fees. These associates will sign an employment contract for Sysco for an agreed period of time. I am excited about what this Driving Academy will do for our recruitment pipeline. And I think we’ll probably expand the program nationwide once we get through the learning curve of our first location.
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