News | Published December 04 2018

Speciality Breads encourage consumers to buy British as Bank warns Brexit could lead to a rise in food prices  

Kent-based bakers Speciality Bread called on consumers to buy British in this year's Parliamentary Review, advice that may be taken on board by many after Mark Carney warned food prices could rise by as much as 10 per cent as a result of a 'no-deal' Brexit. The UK, a spokesperson from the Bank of England said, imports over half of its food from overseas and the unknown impact on the pound and the UK's tariff arrangements could result in dramatic price rises.

Carney, who also spoke last week about the potential negative impact of Brexit on GDP, also said that UK ports are not ready to cope with the changes that would come about as a result of a WTO relationship with the EU, a scenario that would come about in the instance of a "no-deal" outcome. UK "ports are not ready for a move to an administered WTO relationship" he said.

  • Mark Carney predicts rise in food prices of as much as 10 per cent
  • Speciality Bread reflect on the potential impact of Brexit on the UK food sector

After his statement last week Carney came into criticism from Jacob Rees-Mogg, who accused the Governor of the Bank of England of acting out of political motivation and suggested that he was a "failed politician". Carney, perhaps in response to these comments went on to explain his projection by stating "to be absolutely clear, our agents, my colleagues, we have gone to these ports and had conversations directly with the ports in question. We have talked to the private logistics companies, so we have gathered direct information on this."

Carney explained that the Bank of England was prepared for the worst case scenario and that he and his colleagues were "already sleeping soundly" because they were ready for Brexit.

Simon Cannell, the Managing Director at Speciality Breads, discussed the potential impact of Brexit on the food sector in The Parliamentary Review this September, even suggesting they had developed the perfect food product for Brexit. "We believe the Scioche [a mix of a scone and brioche] is the perfect product for Brexit" he explained, because it combines "British tradition, but also brings together the culinary expertise" of France.

Turning to how Brexit could impact food producers, he said "Since the referendum, we have noticed a distinct drop in numbers for job applications. Addressing this problem is one of the few areas for which we don’t currently have a solution in place." Finally, while addressing how he thinks the food sector can respond, and mitigate any potential issues Brexit throws up, he stated "Buy British bread. We can hold our head up high on the international stage."