A UPS truck turns onto Campus Drive at L.L. Bean’s Fulfillment and Returns Center in Freeport on Wednesday. UPS said its largest customers work to shift package volume away from days with the heaviest demand.  Derek Davis/Staff Photographer Buy this Photo

L.L. Bean has confirmed that there have been delays in package pickups by UPS in the wake of a report that the delivery giant has imposed shipping limits on some large retailers as it grapples with a flood of packages unleashed by online shopping during the pandemic and the holidays.

The Wall Street Journal reported that UPS managers told drivers to stop picking up packages from Bean, Hot Topic, Newegg, Gap, Nike and Macy’s on Cyber Monday because demand was reaching shipping limits. The National Retail Federation said that online sales jumped 44 percent last weekend, which included Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the day when many holiday shoppers go online to make purchases.

Bean confirmed that “there have been some delays, primarily at a few of our retail stores,” but said UPS “continues to be a great partner” and is “actively picking up packages from our warehouse facility and our retail locations daily.”

Bean’s spokeswoman did not respond to requests for more information. The company, which is privately held, said it shipped 14.5 million packages in 2018, but hasn’t provided numbers for last year or this year.

In a statement, UPS said it had made “specific capacity allocations last weekend and throughout the holiday season” and has worked with its largest customers to “ensure they are aware of how much capacity is available to them.”

The shipper said it was working closely with those big customers “to steer volume to capacity and ensure that the UPS network is reliable for all customers.”

The company’s statement went on to say that UPS and its largest customers work to shift package volume away from days with the heaviest demand, use weekend capacity and align promotions with shipping capacity.

“If demand exceeds planned allocations, we will work with our larger customers to ensure the volume gets picked up and delivered as more capacity becomes available in our network,” UPS said.

Retailers have been expecting a surge in online sales this holiday season. Many consumers have been shifting to online shopping due to the coronavirus pandemic and the shift has accelerated during the fall with an early start on the holiday shopping season.

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