The UK and Europe are now just a few days into the new Brexit era and things in the trade are still calm, there have been a few reports of orders being delayed by a day, but the volume of imports is still lower than normal, so any disruption is limited.
“We are not seeing any problems yet,” explains Shane Talling from Veg-UK. “That said we got our last load on 31st December when things were quiet. Our next load from Spain is due in on Sunday but we expect things to go smoothly.”
Shane said there are of course extra costs on imports now. “It depends on the load, we import mixed pallets from Spain with 3-4 different products and pay £55 per product, but if you go above 5 different products from a grower then the cost will increase. That should not be a problem for us. If you take the costs over a complete load it is not too much.”
Before Christmas when the ports temporarily closed it actually worked to the advantage of UK growers like Veg-UK who had their own production of cauliflower.
“The cauliflower market was low due to imports from France, but the border closure firmed up the pre-Christmas market.”
Veg-UK also exports cauliflower and broccoli into Europe and according to Shane there will be no disruption for their customers. “We will do the paperwork at our side so the customer will not be affected. We do expect some teething problems at the ports but are confident that things can continue as before.”