Wiegand-Glas has postponed the start-up of an amber glass furnace at its Schleusingen, Germany production site.

The German container glass manufacturer cited ‘exploding’ energy and raw material prices, as well as staff sickness from the Omicron variant as the cause.

The furnace was set for start up this month but has now been delayed until the second quarter.

It said: “This significantly reduces our amber glass capacity, since the old melting tank at the Schleusingen site went out of service as early as Christmas week.”

It added: “The supply situation and the cost situation for raw, auxiliary and operating materials has worsened dramatically, so that there is a considerable business risk here.

“Furthermore, sick leave is already extremely high and a fifth corona wave with the highly infectious omicron variant is ahead of us.

"This greatly increases the risk that regular operations can no longer be guaranteed and lines have to be shut down.”

The group had started a white glass furnace at the newly built site in June 2020.