RTE reports that Marks & Spencer said Britain’s withdrawal from European Union trade rules last week was responsible for near-empty fresh-food aisles at some of its stores in Ireland.
Pictures posted on Twitter showed these scenes in at least two Dublin Marks & Spencer stores, while several rival supermarkets in Dublin had full fresh fruit and vegetable shelves.
“Following the UK’s recent departure from the EU, we are transitioning to new processes and it is taking a little longer for some of our products to reach our stores,” a Marks & Spencer spokesman told Reuters.
Rival Sainsbury’s earlier this week said it had begun to stack some products in Northern Ireland stores from rival Spar.
Northern Ireland is subject to customs and food safety checks under the terms of Britain’s EU trade deal.
“A small number of our products are temporarily unavailable for our customers in Northern Ireland while border arrangements are confirmed,” a Sainsbury’s spokesman said.
Most of Marks and Spencer’s fresh produce on Irish shelves originates from Britain or elsewhere in the world. Its products are often prominently branded as British-made.
At least three Marks & Spencer branches in France also had empty shelves earlier this week.