June CPG Jobs Numbers Flat Despite Big Gains for Broader Economy, According to Consumer Brands Association
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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ARLINGTON, Va. — Despite robust jobs growth seen in the broader economy, the consumer packaged goods industry remains an outlier as it struggles to find workers to fill open positions. According to the Consumer Brands Association, CPG industry employment was unchanged from May, holding steady at a total of 2,085,000 in June, despite 380,000 openings in non-durable manufacturing which includes CPG. While growth from May to June was flat, CPG employment is up by 3.9% when compared to June 2020.
“The CPG industry remains locked in a struggle to find the workforce it needs,” said Geoff Freeman, president and CEO of Consumer Brands. “As potential workers’ COVID-19 concerns dissipate and states ease unemployment benefits, the candidate pool may grow. In the meantime, we welcome a conversation with the administration on the challenges our industry is facing in filling openings and opportunities to grow our essential workforce — for the jobs of today and tomorrow.”
Growth in today’s report was concentrated to key sectors of the economy. Food services and drinking places added 194,000 jobs, signaling more Americans are going out and at-home consumption may decline some in the coming months. At present, however, demand for CPG products was once again up in May, 7.4% higher than last year when much of the country was in lockdown. Even as more Americans venture out, long-term or permanent behavior changes, like the move to more virtual work, will keep demand higher than before the pandemic.
“We are not hiring to restore the industry that was, we are hiring to create the industry that will be,” said Freeman. “Right now, that means bringing on enough workers to meet consistently high demand, while also hiring to accommodate a changed world.”
With 77% of Americans who used online ordering during the pandemic planning to continue doing so, CPG companies are battling for talent to ramp up e-commerce capabilities as well as hiring to grow resiliency through greater digitization of their supply chains.
And industries that CPG companies are dependent on are also contending with labor shortages. Trucking added 6,400 jobs, still 38,000 short of where the industry was in February 2020. The ongoing driver shortage comes ahead of a busy July Fourth weekend where gas stations across the country are running dry due to a lack of truckers to deliver gas, an issue that will be felt by holiday travelers and CPG companies alike.
“Competition is fierce to recruit employees to our facilities and across the supply chain, and the stakes are high when it comes to getting products in the hands of consumers that depend on them,” added Freeman.
The Consumer Brands Association champions the industry whose products Americans depend on every day, representing nearly 2,000 iconic brands. From household and personal care to food and beverage products, the consumer packaged goods industry plays a vital role in powering the U.S. economy, contributing $2 trillion to U.S. GDP and supporting more than 20 million American jobs.
Published on July 2, 2021
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