Panic-buyers queue from 5am as border chaos sparks Christmas dinner food shortage fears

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PANIC-BUYERS have today been pictured queueing from 5am after border chaos sparked fears of a Christmas dinner shortage.

France last night banned all travel to and from Britain including freight due to the mutant Covid strain — stoking fears of a breakdown in vaccine, food and goods supplies over Christmas.

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One Brit shared a photograph of people queuing outside shops at 5.50am[/caption]


Waitrose store in Henleaze, near Bristol, saw queues already growing in the early hours[/caption]


Despite the rain, Brits lined up outside the shops to get food this morning[/caption]

Supermarkets face major shortages of food and Christmas goods after France closed its UK border.

And the news has already sparked chaos in Britain this morning, with worried Brits already pictured outside supermarkets to grab food and supplies.

Supermarkets had already issued warnings yesterday to not panic buy as the new Tier system came into force.

A source for Tesco, Britain’s biggest supermarket chain, told The Telegraph: “We will not run out of food. There is no reason to panic buy.

“There are the same number of shoppers out there as there were before any new announcement and we have enough stock to supply them all, even if more now come into our stores because online delivery slots are full.”

The British Retail Consortium urged people to shop responsibly, but said it did not anticipate any problems with getting supplies to shops.

A spokesman said: “We don’t expect this announcement to have any significant impact on the food supply chain, which is robust and has coped very well throughout the pandemic. People should shop as normal, and be considerate of retail colleagues and fellow shoppers to keep everyone safe.”

But the warnings appeared to fall on deaf ears for some as lines already began forming in the early hours of Monday.

Despite the rain, queues were seen outside one Waitrose store in Henleaze, near Bristol, in the early hours of today.

And another Brit shared a snap of him waiting with other shoppers at 5.50am to get toilet paper.

Huw Evans Picture Agency

Closed off sections in an Asda store in Cardiff on the first day of the Christmas lockdown in Wales.[/caption]

Huw Evans Picture Agency

Toys – regarded as non-essential – are blocked off by piles of alcohol in Asda, Coryton, Cardiff[/caption]

Huw Evans Picture Agency

Toys can’t be bought as they are classified as non-essential [/caption]

Supermarkets continue to remain open across all tiers over the Christmas period, with stores such as Sainsbury’s even extending their opening hours.

Meanwhile, there was chaos at Britain’s busiest port in Dover overnight as people were left stranded in the cold after the sudden closure.

The port has now been closed, sparking fears for deliveries to and from Calais in the lead up to Christmas.

The new mutant strain causing the sudden ban is feared to be 70 per cent more infectious.

An industry source said: “Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse — disaster on top of disaster. I fear for supermarket supply chains.

“It’s the panic buying we are most worried about. The chains have held up all year but only if people are sensible.”

There were also rising fears the blockade could disrupt vital supplies of the Pfizer Biotech vaccine to the UK which is made in Belgium.

Military aircraft could airlift supplies of the vaccine from Belgium if the freight ban stays in place for longer than 48 hours, The Department of Health confirmed.

PM Boris Johnson has called an emergency Cobra meeting of ministers and the military.

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