IGD - Economics bulletin 13 November

Date : 13 November 2020

Your overview of political and economic news with a focus on the food and consumer goods industry, featuring the latest guidance on COVID-19 and planning for the end of the transition period with the EU.

EU exit update

Talks about a trade deal between the UK and EU are entering the final stages. The National Audit Office (NAO) has issued a new report in which it raises concerns that the UK will not be ready for the change to new trading arrangements on 01 January 2021.

Register for the next IGD EU Exit Webinar update on 19 November to stay up-to-date on all the key issues, including progress of trade talks, government preparation for EU Exit and exclusive IGD research.

IGD continues to urge members to prepare for “no-deal”. See our EU Exit Checklist.

Visit the EU EXIT Foodhub which provides information for agri-food businesses to help them prepare for the end of the transition period including lists of Frequently Asked Questions.

Trading and stockpiling

There are reports that demand has now levelled off following an initial increase due to the introduction of the national lockdown in England. Previous IGD research conducted 6-8 November revealed that 52% of shoppers had claimed to have stockpiled or bought extra recently.

Managing outbreaks in food settings

Industry representatives have developed good practice guidance  for cohorting, which used in conjunction with other Covid-19 risk management measures can help to ensure food settings can remain open where outbreaks have been identified.

It is also important to continue adhere to the principles of managing an outbreak including cohorting, risk assessments and maintaining social distancing within the workplace.

Northern Ireland lockdown changes

The Northern Ireland Executive has announced that Covid-19 restrictions in Northern Ireland will be extended for one more week with a partial reopening of some sectors next Friday. Hospitality will reopen on a graduated basis, with unlicensed premises such as cafes and coffee shops opening on 20 November.

Travel corridor changes

The government has announced further changes to the list of “safer” travel destinations.

Akrotiri, Dhekelia and Greece, except the islands of Corfu, Crete, Kos, Rhodes and Zakynthos, will be removed from the exempt list from 4 a.m. on Saturday 14 November.

These countries are now considered more dangerous, requiring travellers to isolate for 2 weeks.

The following countries will be added to the exempt list from 4 a.m. on Saturday 7 November:

  • Bahrain, Cambodia, Chile, Iceland, Laos, Qatar, Turks and Caicos Islands and the United Arab Emirates

There are reports that the government is looking at reducing the quarantine period by introducing more regular testing for those returning from international destinations. An announcement is expected in the next week.

Wholesale Sector Survey

With Covid-19 severely impacting parts of the wholesale sector, Defra is keen to monitor this and is encouraging wholesale businesses to complete its’ Wholesale Sector Survey.

Online advertising consultation

The government has launched a new consultation on proposals to ban online adverts for foods high in fat, sugar and salt in the UK.

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