Woolworths' head of toys Nick Hill has warned Woolies and other retailers could run out of toys this Christmas – as stringent checks are imposed on Chinese exports.
Hill was quoted in Retail Week saying that Woolworths "could run out of some of this year's must have toys".
"Our advice at this stage is to put toys at the top of the priority list for Christmas shopping. The situation is changing on a daily basis and it is too early to tell whether there will be shortages of the most popular lines as it gets closer to Christmas Eve," he said.
However, last night Trevor Bish Jones, chief executive of Woolworths, insisted that widespread shortages were unlikely – with the retailer working hard to ensure shipments from China made it to the UK.
But TRA chairman Gary Grant, added: "We are experiencing shipping delays of up to two weeks. There will always be shortages at Christmas and, in certain lines, demand has completely outstripped supply."