It could take five years for food and beverage companies operating in the UK to successfully restructure their supply chains in the event of a no-deal Brexit, according to supply chain and logistics consultancy Scala.
The report claims that uncertainty surrounding currency exchange rates, possible new trade tariffs and the likelihood of border delays could severely impact businesses that source products or components from the EU, and/or export to the EU.
The food industry, in particular, could be vulnerable, as it may no longer be feasible for businesses to import short-shelf-life products and perishable goods from the EU.
Scala says that these factors make it increasingly necessary for food and beverage companies to undertake a full assessment of their supply chain strategies, as it could take as long five years to re-engineer and optimise their supply chains.
John Perry, managing director of Scala said: “Over the years, company supply chains have been continuously improved and developed to meet the demands of the consumer as cost-effectively as possible.
“As part of this, UK businesses have become increasingly reliant on sourcing from the EU, driven by the supply chain benefits of quick lead-times, manufacturing rationalisation and faster response times to changes in demand.
“However, in the event of a no-deal Brexit, this is all set to drastically change. Companies will need to determine the impact of new trading laws and tariffs, as well as the potential costs and duration of new supply chain routes.
“Borders will be more complicated, so supplier relationships will need to be re-evaluated, and alternative options considered such as stockpiling in UK warehousing.
“This is a complex process and these changes can’t be made overnight. For some companies, this will involve a major reset. The more complex the supply chain network, the more extensive and lengthier the process is likely to be.
“Even for proactive businesses that start preparing now, the ramifications of Brexit are major, and it is not a quick process for companies to re-optimise their supply chains.
“Some companies may just tweak elements or try and make-do for short-term survival, but for long-term competitiveness the supply chain needs to be properly re-assessed and optimised.”
By Martin White
A new wave of brands is emerging that promotes indulgence and rejects the notion of sacrifice. Low-maintenance “hangover” beauty products are designed to address the effects of late nights and partying without judgment or hassle, and even include cosmetics that are formulated in a way that means you can fall asleep in your makeup without feeling guilty.
The pilot will allow the company to scale circular packaging in about 18 markets over the next three years, an approach that jumps on the success of similar efforts in the company’s Indonesia ecoSPIRITS program, which launched in 2022 and is active in 38 bars.
Unilever’s focus on purpose across its brands has been a source of criticism from some of its investors. Its new CEO Hein Schumacher says the company now recognises there are some brands where the concept is simply not relevant.