Well here we are again eight months on and we are all in the same position, which is no great surprise. With this in mind there is nothing new in the statement that follows and we are again taking the same steps within our business regarding our ice cream, waffle cones, and other ice cream cones. The only difference being, that the end of October for most of the trade is a quieter time of the year for production and sales, so may mean less stress for our customers than if it was the original date in March.
Although we have been planning for the last year, it is only towards the end of the settlement period that the final situation will become clearer (this was always going to be the case). We have been working closely with the Food & Drink Federation to gain any insights to likely outcomes and how best to prepare. There are no certainties right now and this is not likely to change much until 31st October. The UK & EEU trading relationship is very strong and both sides need each other to a great extent, so although the footing may remain undecided for an extended period, we don’t envisage any major changes in the short term. Assuming we do leave (which is far from certain itself) the changes are likely to result in gains as well as losses. For example there are raw materials that are cheaper on the world market which we don’t have access to currently.
Early this year in February and at Easter, Antonelli experienced a massive surge in demand particularly for our cones (including our well-loved waffle cones) and wafers. Some of this was due to the unusual good weather, but we were also pleased to receive more new customers than expected. With this this in mind, we have increased our production & stock levels significantly in order to reassure you that whatever the outcome of Brexit, Antonelli is ready.
The Plan - Cones & Wafers
Antonelli is the only UK manufacturer of waffle cones, using UK grown & processed sugar as well as UK wheat flour in our production process. This puts us in a very strong position to ensure supply continuity, whilst benefiting from closer cost control and logistics certainty. We have secured raw material & packaging going forward, until well into 2020. The Antonelli on-site extensive warehouse facility is currently being increased by 5%, with a further 40% increase in early 2020. Our dedicated bakery is working tirelessly making ‘Cones for the Connoisseur’, as we have for over 105 years, so for ice cream cones (whether waffle cones, wafer cones or sugar cones) and wafers our customers can relax!
The Plan - Non Edible Finished Goods
For EU sourced or manufactured, non-edible finished goods such as spoons, packaging and pans, we have stock to cover sales up to February 2020.
The Plan - Ingredients for Ice Cream
The unpredictable risk is for ice cream ingredients deliveries (due to logistics and high demand) particularly from mid October and in the New Year. After this time it is most likely that any barriers or conditions to trade will have been resolved and new logistic systems established. Antonelli has set the standard in the UK for service regarding stock availability over the past twelve years. We secured stock in March this year and again we currently have stock arriving which we forecast will supply all the way through to early January. The risk is that smaller demand lines such as Trifle Paste, may now be unavailable until the New Year. We don’t envisage this being an issue for retailers/makers, who can switch flavours in their cabinets, but wholesalers may wish to build contingency by holding more ingredients of niche flavour lines.
We are planning very carefully to ensure we continue to supply your business in a responsible
way. If you have any questions or concerns on this or any other matter, do get in touch.
Director of Sales and Technical support
For & on behalf of Antonelli Bros Ltd