Food Supply Chains’ 44.7 Billion Pound Brexit Problem — Panjiva
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Food Supply Chains’ 44.7 Billion Pound Brexit Problem

Ags - Fruit/Veg 82 Ags - Grains/Beans 162 Ags - Meat/Dairy 138 Ags - Softs 81 Brexit 68 Cons. Staples - Food/Beverages 395 European Union 406 Trade Deals 702 United Kingdom 194

Food supply chains in the U.K. are poorly prepared for a “no deal” Brexit. Food & Drink Federation CEO, Ian Wright, has stated that the industry is “not going to be even remotely ready,” for an exit on Mar. 29, Business Insider reports. The results could “mean really bad economic consequences for everyone in this country not seen since the war.” As flagged in Panjiva research of Jan. 17 similar concerns – though not as draconian – have been raised for the pharmaceutical industry too.

While customs arrangements from outside the EU won’t change materially the terms of trade will given the U.K. has around 40 trade arrangements the EU already applies to recreate. In any event the EU accounted for 70.6% of Britain’s £47.7 billion pounds ($62.3 billion) worth of food, beverage and tobacco in the 12 months to Nov. 30, Panjiva analysis of official data shows. A rush in imports may only occur close to the deadline with shipments from all suppliers in November having risen by just 3.8% on a year earlier vs. 1.9% for the prior three months.

NON-EU IMPORTS PICKING UP MORE QUICKLY THAN THOSE FROM EUROPE

Chart segments British imports of food, beverages and tobacco by origin on a monthly and a three-month average basis. Calculations based on Office for National Statistics data.  Source: Panjiva

The reliance on the EU is higher for dairy (98.7% of imports), meat (82.2%) and cereals (80.0%). Of the three the growth in imports has been highest for cereals in the past 12 months at 6.2% year over year despite a 2.6% slump in the month of November.

DAIRY AND CEREALS GROWING QUICKER AND MORE EU-DEPENDENT

Chart segments British imports of food, beverages and tobacco from the EU by product over the 12 months to Nov. 30. Bubble size indicates value of imports. Calculations based on Office for National Statistics data.  Source: Panjiva

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