Keep talking as the deadline looms, says Lynx

Rachel Dobson Lynx Purchasing

By Rachel Dobson, managing director, Lynx Purchasing

As the latest Brexit deadline approaches, it feels very much like we’ve been here before, but it’s clearly more important than ever that operators prepare as best they can. Supply chains hate uncertainty, but unfortunately that’s really all we’ve got to work with.

Our key message to operators is to keep talking to their suppliers; the more they talk, the more information suppliers can share to keep them updated. Strong supplier relationships are going to essential in the event of a no deal Brexit, so ask for regular updates and if necessary, press suppliers on what their contingency plans are.

Ask which products could be most affected, i.e. those not grown, produced or manufactured in the UK, and with a particular focus on products which are key to the business, so they can plan ahead – for example, if most of your salad and citrus fruit comes from Europe, what are the alternatives?

It will make sense to build as much flexibility as possible into menus, and look at the wording of dishes. That can be as simple as listing the “catch of the day” rather than a specific fish species, or saying dishes are “served with fresh, seasonal vegetables”.

Clearly, if some of the worst-case no deal scenarios come to pass, there’s a big question how confident consumers will be about spending on eating out, but operators still need to plan. For small to medium sized operators in particular, working with a buying specialist who has an overview of the supply situation and can offer help and advice where needed, will ensure they can keep up with the big players in terms of purchasing power.

The latest edition of the regular Lynx Purchasing Market Forecast offers operators an in-depth look at pricing and product trends over the coming months.

A free copy can be downloaded at

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