What does Brexit mean for packaging?

Mike Golding – Managing Director

It’s been a tumultuous few weeks. There’s been talk about cancelled food-labelling regulations, import costs rising, raw materials price increases and many other concerns in the wake of a majority vote for the UK to leave the EU.

At TCL Packaging, we think there is no need to be alarmed. We feel confident that business will continue and things will start to calm.

Labelling

Firstly there’s food labelling. EU Food Information Regulations (FIR) become mandatory on 13th December, 2016 and nothing will change in this respect – the regulations are part of current EU legislation.  We’ll all be still doing business in the Europe and most leading brands have already made all the changes required. Current food labelling provides much better information for consumers and that is the important factor.

Costs

The cost of imported raw material into the UK for packaging manufacture will rise in the short term but costs are expected to level out once market volatility settles. This is likely to affect prices of UK-bought packaging a little but, of course, the cost of imported finished product from overseas will be similarly affected.  This means that your current supply arrangements are probably still the best ones.

Imports/exports

For those customers packing product in the UK and exporting, a weaker pound will help exports and any change to cost of packaging per SKU is likely to be negligible creating an improved situation for exporters.

In summary, any changes to packaging costs are likely to be short lived and regulations won’t change any time soon. We can’t foresee any problems with packaging supply either.

The advice from TCL Packaging to our UK customers is to continue making world-class products and pack using the best quality packaging materials; in other words, focusing on business as usual is the best way forward in these unsettling times.

So, that’s packaging dealt with, what about the country? Well, it’s wait and see of course but at TCL we are hopeful of a business-like, unemotional Brexit negotiation with strong leadership.  If we get this, we fully expect Britain to be fine too – it just may take a little while for things to settle.

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