No room at the inn for Brexit stockpilers

No room at the inn for Brexit stockpilers
Warehouse

It’s usually the calm after the Christmas storm for the UK’s commercial, temperature controlled warehouses. Then along came Brexit stockpiling. According to the Food Storage and Distribution Federation (FSDF), virtually every chilled and frozen warehouse facility up and down the country is fully reserved between now and April – and beyond. “Whether it’s ingredients going into manufacture or finished product going to shelf…you’re effectively all of out of options,” said FSDF chief executive Shane Brennan. Cadbury’s owner, Mondelēz International, revealed late last year it was hoarding cocoa beans and other ingredients as part of a Brexit contingency plan while Premier Foods, which owns Bisto, Oxo and Mr Kipling, said it expected to spend £10 million on stockpile preparations. They weren’t alone. The FSDF, which represents 350 warehouse owners and 75 percent of all commercially available frozen and chilled food warehouses across the UK said members have been inundated with reservation requests. Malcolm Johnstone, owner of Associated Cold Stores & Transport (ACST) confirmed it wasn’t just domestic suppliers seeking space, with one Danish butter company wanting to store 11,000 pallets of butter. “We had to turn him away,” Johnstone told The Guardian. “Normally butter would dribble into the UK food chain to meet demand, but these people are worried the supply chain will be interrupted and want stocks in the market before 29 March.” 

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