Sarah De Salis, Finn's group account director for corporate communications, joined the Food & Drink Federation’s webinar on Brexit yesterday, in which chief executive Ian Wright ran through the potential scenarios and considered what the next few days may bring. His advice couldn’t have been clearer: make every effort to prepare for a no-deal Brexit.
For the food and drinks sector – and a range of our clients – it’s a case of preparing as much as possible within an environment of uncertainty and confusion, as a number of key questions from tariffs to regulations remain unanswered. This is unlikely to change in the near future, but the webinar highlighted that there are resources available that can help.
The industry-backed Brexit Food Hub provides a place for businesses to go to access a wide range of official advice and expertise from UK food and agriculture partners, including the latest information as it becomes available.
In addition, the ‘Get Ready for Brexit’ campaign launched by the government this week encourages people and businesses to answer questions on the website to receive support on preparing for Brexit.
Of course, these resources only go so far for FMCGs - employees, stakeholders, customers and consumers are also looking for assurances that businesses are prepared for Brexit.
Most businesses will create an operational business plan for Brexit and the different scenarios, but the next crucial step is to develop a comms strategy, to ensure all key stakeholders are informed about it. And this is something that is all too often forgotten.
If you need help getting that message out there, or some guidance about how to prepare comms around Brexit plans, then please drop Sarah an email.
Whatever the outcome of the next few weeks, we can be sure that the food and drink will remain firmly centre stage in the national debate.
Greg Felgate, Partner and director at Finn Comms.