A small shortage of certain toys will be seen across Europe this Christmas, suppliers have told Cork toystores.
Val Byrne, store manager at Toy Town, Blackpool confirmed there will be a shortage of some toys, but said it would not be a major issue.
Speaking to The Echo, Mr Byrne said: “There are issues over in China with some suppliers trying to get stock over here to the UK, Ireland and Europe.
“I was talking to a rep of one of the major toy companies last week and named out a few things to him and he said unless we had it ordered in January or February, we would be struggling to get it alright.”
Mr Byrne said the problem is with the worldwide suppliers.
“There is going to be a minor shortage and a very minor issue with regards some things but we just have to see how things pan out.”
With regards to what toys will be affected, the store manager said it could affect any type of toy from popular toys to niche and classical favourites.
Despite this Mr Byrne reassured customers that the majority of Christmas favourites would be available for purchase in Toy Town this season.
“We are pretty confident that we are going to get a lot of the major toys, that would have been ordered in January and February. We would feel very confident that we will get a lot of the toys we want. We will have plenty of stock and when a customer asks ‘Do you have this?’ we generally do have it, nine times out of ten.”
Mr Byrne, who stressed that Toy Town does not sell computer software, playstations or computers, said they have had an increase of customers in recent weeks looking to take home their Christmas stocking fillers.
"The same things are popular. The same old traditionals: Lego, Barbie and Toy Story 4.They generally would be popular. There is no major toy that everyone is looking for.”
Wyon Stanfeld who owns Pinnochio’s Toys on Paul Street also said the last three to four weeks have been busier than normal in his shop.
Mr Stanfeld, who has been operating the store since 1991, said as a specialist toy store they don’t carry the latest trends, but the classical items such as puzzles and jigsaws have been doing well.
The toystore owner said they had not seen a shortage of toys but said they had heard from one of their German suppliers that they were having difficulty getting orders filled from China.
"I know that one of our German suppliers has a huge order in with a Chinese manufacturer and they cannot get an answer to their questions, so I’m sure there is potentially a shortage."
As well as puzzles and jigsaws, Mr Stanfeld said boardgames were making a massive comeback, with many games completely selling out during lockdown.
“We sold out of loads of games during lockdown and even now there is evidence that people want to do something at home and they want high quality, long-lasting games.”