Change in products Buying group
?For the most part, we were unaffected by the floods. Some of our members' depots were hit but this didn't have too great an impact and we were able to continue supplying our customers.
Overall this year there has been a change in the mix of products compared with what you would normally expect but we are still up on last year and are outperforming the sector.
Sales of products that would be associated with the summer such as soft drinks were down but we picked up on other products. There were no major availability issues as far as I am aware.
As such, we did not have to dramatically change our plans.
Behind budget Cash & carry operator
?I am pleased to report that our sales held up well despite everything. Certain categories, such as soft drinks, were down on budget but this was compensated for by increases in the confectionery and snacks sectors.
Certain suppliers have had production problems in the confectionery sector and these are still continuing. Although we are showing a slight increase in sales on last year, the weather has affected us in that we are behind on our internal budget numbers.
This has come about because we have had to introduce some hard-hitting promotional activities to ensure we maintain our footfall and drive the top line - at the expense of our margins, unfortunately.
Working harder Cash & carry and delivered wholesaler
?We did not suffer directly because of flooding but there is no doubt that our sales were lower compared with last year, thanks to the unpredictable weather, which has affected demand for certain products.
Bizarrely, we have had significant supply problems on confectionery because of unforeseen high summer sales - when it is hot confectionery sales drop but they didn't this year because of the cool summer.
At the same time we experienced some disruption to our supply of beer and soft drinks, which would have been disastrous had the weather been better during the summer months.
We have lost sales because of the weather but there is not much you can do. There one thing we have had to do this year to keep on track is simply to work harder.