Brexit or no Brexit? Deal or no deal? Does it really make a difference to businesses and consumers?
Regardless on where you stand on Brexit, I think it's fair to say it's a deeply divisive and polarising issue, with passionately held opinions and views on what's the best for the UK.
We're not a news outlet nor am I a columnist, therefore I'll confine this post to let you know what a no-deal Brexit would mean for us, you and your customers.
For many months, we've been preparing for every possible Brexit scenario, some of which have required more preparations than others. However, it's safe to say that most of our time, attention and resources have been dedicated to prepare for what we predict would be the most uncertain and challenging scenario of all: no-deal.
We are preparing on 2 fronts: on the one hand we are preparing to stockpile products that allow us to do so, and on the other hand, we're preparing for the new reality from November 1st if we leave the EU without a deal. I'll break them down for you below.
- Stockpiling: We have forecasted disruptions and delays on products entering the UK from the EU, therefore we have decided to stockpile the products that have a long enough shelf life.
However, the downside of doing this is that at some point in November or December, you'll receive products with a shorter-than-usual remaining shelf life. This will happen regardless of what happens at the end of the month.
We apologise in advance for the inconvenience this would cause to you, but we have carefully assessed this, and decided that the best thing to do is to have shorter shelf life rather than having no products at all due to the possible disruptions.
In a nutshell, we opted for not-so-good certainty rather than complete uncertainty.
I hope you can agree with our position, and hopefully will continue to support us in this scenario.
- After a no-deal Brexit: I can reassure you that we have done our due diligence, and are ready to operate after a no-deal exit.
We have ticked all the boxes: TSP, DAN and EORI? All done. We are 100% ready to keep trading with our EU suppliers after a no-deal scenario.
However, a major downside of leaving without a deal is that almost every product we import from EU countries will become more expensive, due to the tariffs applied by the UK Government to imports coming from a country (or bloc) with which the UK hasn't got a Free Trade Deal in place.
Below you'll find the tariffs that will be applied to our EU brands upon entering the country:
GreenVie, Happy Cashew, Meetlyke, MozzaRisella, Pangea Foods, Terra Vegane, Veggyness, Veggy Star and Violife - 12.8%
Il Modicano - 18.7%
Epos Caffè - between 7.5% and 9.0%
Freedom Confectionery - 18.7%
Kookie Cat - 24.2%
Schlagfix - between 7.7% and 17.6%
Simply Chai - 6.0%
Sojade - between 9.0% and 12.8%
Solaris Tea - between 0% and 3.2%
Vitam - between 0% and 19.2%
In the figures above, we are only considering the tariffs all these brands will be affected by. Far more work and costs are involved in the import of these brands, from the customs formalities to the increased transport costs.
This is just to give you an idea of the amount of additional costs we will have to face.
We will do everything we can to minimise the impact these changes will bring to you and your business, but inevitably some of them will be passed on to you, and ultimately - through your business - to the end consumer.
Having said all of the above, I can personally assure you that we will remain true to our values, staying honest, diligent, transparent and loyal.
We understand that there is a number of businesses trying to take advantage of a possible no-deal scenario to artificially increase prices, but I would like to reassure you that this is definitely not our approach.
Ultimately, we are in business to make a difference and to make veganism grow, and opportunism and dishonesty goes completely against our mission and values.
So, there you have it. I hope this summary of the situation is clear enough for you.
If you have any questions, please feel free to comment below.
Also, we would like to know from you:
- What do you think about this whole Brexit issue?
- What measures are you taking to prepare your business for a no-deal scenario?
I look forward to reading your comments.
In the meantime, let's finish on a positive note: whatever happens (or doesn't happen), we'll be fine and.... we'll stay vegan!
Enjoy Halloween (this year we're sure it'll be... let's say... "interesting")!