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Retail

'No-Deal' Brexit 'Disastrous' For UK's Food And Drink Industry: FDF

The UK's Food and Drink Federation (FDF) has said that a 'no-deal' Brexit would result in 'disastrous consequences' for the country's food and drink manufacturers.

The House of Commons Select Exiting the European Union Committee has published a report on the consequences of a 'no-deal' Brexit for the industry, which employs 450,000 people and has a turnover of £104 billion (€115.7 billion).

'Significant And Adverse Changes'

The chief operating officer of the Food and Drink Federation, Tim Rycroft, welcomed the findings and said, "Within weeks [after Brexit], it is likely that shoppers would notice significant and adverse changes to the products available and random, selective shortages. Limited shelf-life products would face the most immediate risk."

He also remarked that the run-up to 31 October 2019 will be "particularly stark".

In that period, manufacturers will not be able to obtain additional warehousing space or logistics capacity for stockpiling frozen and chilled food, as it would be booked for Christmas production.

'Major Impact On Availability'

"Manufacturers will, therefore, have no spare production capacity or ability to store ingredients and finished products," Rycroft explained, adding that, "UK food imports will climb from autumn onwards as fresh food stocks decline, so any 'no-deal' disruption will have a major impact on availability."

He also stated that an analysis by the UK Trade Policy Observatory has revealed that a 'no-deal' situation would destroy £18.5 billion (€20.58 billion) worth of UK food and drink manufacturing, with "grave consequences" for UK consumers.

© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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