Retailers warn no-deal Brexit poses “significant” risk to grocery shelves

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Brexit GFK
// Retailers warn a no-deal Brexit means increased food prices & a “significant” risk to food supply
// In a letter to MPs, it was warned that tariffs would “greatly” increase import costs
// Sainsbury’s, Asda, Marks & Spencer, the Co-Op, Lidl, & Waitrose are signatories to the letter

Many of the UK’s leading retailers have warned that a no-deal Brexit could result in increased food prices and could also pose a “significant” risk to the availability and quality of products on supermarket shelves.

In a letter to MPs, the BRC was warned that tariffs would “greatly” increase import costs if the UK is forced to fall back on World Trade Organisation rules, while delays at ports could “reduce the availability and shelf life of many products in our stores”.


Retailers such as Sainsbury’s, Asda, Marks & Spencer, the Co-Op, Lidl, Waitrose and Costcutters are all signatories to the letter that was written by the British Retail Consortium (BRC).

They warned that the UK depends on Europe for almost one-third of its food, and that it is unlikely in a no-deal scenario to mitigate all risks to supply chains, many of which have highly perishable goods.

“We are extremely concerned that our customers will be among the first to experience the realities of a no-deal Brexit,” the letter read.

“We anticipate significant risks to maintaining the choice, quality and durability of food that our customers have come to expect in our stores, and there will be inevitable pressure on food prices from higher transport costs, currency devaluation and tariffs.

“We are therefore asking you to work with your colleagues in Parliament urgently to find a solution that avoids the shock of a no-deal Brexit on March 29 and removes these risks for UK consumers.”

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