Several Edmonton businesses are seeing holes in their inventory as a result of disruptions in manufacturing in China thanks to the new coronavirus.
READ MORE: Millions in China working from home amid novel coronavirus crackdown
The Chinese government extended the Lunar New Year holiday to keep factories and offices closed. Controls imposed on business to try to stem the spread of infection extend nationwide, affecting tens of thousands of companies and hundreds of millions of employees.
However, China’s vast manufacturing industries cannot function without workers in factories.
READ MORE: ‘Complete uncertainty’: Companies brace for losses from coronavirus outbreak
Connie Lang, showroom sales manager for Best Plumbing, has been with the company for eight years and has never seen anything like this.
Lang said approximately 40 per cent of the company’s inventory is a house brand that is made in China.
Lang said products such as vanities, shower doors and tubs are not being delivered as a result.
Lang said the delays in delivery are affecting the company’s bottom line because they are substituting for products that are available but at a higher price.
It’s a similar story for Suits by Curtis Eliot in downtown Edmonton, which designs and orders custom suits from a manufacturer in China.
Owner Sean Farmer said there is a minimum 10-day delay in getting products imported.
Farmer said most customers order a suit for a function or special event in a few weeks, meaning the delays are hurting his customer service.