A looming food crisis?
Sir: The new study by policy specialists that warns of an impending food supply crisis has raised important issues. Food supply shortages could become a feature of life in Britain after Brexit if importing arrangements fail to be clarified in good time.
Many retailers have taken steps to shorten their supply chains following the Elliott review. But trading relationships with wholesalers sourcing from abroad will face increased pressure due to rising costs and increasing administration. Even if low tariffs are negotiated, any changes to customs/duty will increase costs significantly, due to increased administration. Reduced access to labour could drive up costs, while changes in CAP subsidies could increase costs and in the long term reduce capacity for growth.
Phil Bulman, food sector specialist, Vendigital
Sir, I read with interest the news that the number of high street shoppers has risen due to warmer weather. As a director of consumer programmes, I wish to highlight that pleasant weather can only bring customers on to the streets - it cannot commit them to purchase. It’s not just about putting ice creams on offer. Brands must recognise the impact fair weather has on footfall and swiftly implement promotions that will bolster revenue. Products unrelated to the heat can benefit from the psychology of these shoppers by communicating promotions that draw on summer themes and sunny days. From technology promotions that reference summer sports to white goods that offer free activities in school holidays, retailers need to think outside the box when it’s sunny.
Chris Baldwin, director of consumer promotions and loyalty, Sodexo Benefits and Rewards Services
The need for speed
Sir, There is clearly demand from shoppers willing to pay a premium to get their groceries delivered in the moment, and more retailers are trialling one-hour delivery. According to PWC, consumers rate fast and reliable delivery as the fourth most important factor when choosing which retailer to buy from. Ultimately, this is only a good thing for shoppers who need to make a last-minute purchase. But it can also work in favour of impulse-led brands who can capitalise on one-hour deliveries, providing active solutions to current need states.
Sam Knights, director, shopper media agency Threefold