Henryson Foods International

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Henryson Foods International's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Henryson Foods International is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

www.henrysonfoods.co.uk

BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
32 | THE LORD WHISKY SANCTUARY FUND
Funding and publicising
ourwork
We rely entirely on donations and
legacies to carry on our work. The costs
of housing, feeding and caring for rescue
animals are immense. We hold regular
boot fairs and an annual dog show and
although outside events are at the mercy
of the weather, they raise significant
funds. We are always open to innovative
ways to fund ourselves; for example
we hold an annual poetry competition,
several quiz nights and our popular “Fur,
Feather & Exotic”exhibition.
In the early 1980s, we took over a pub
near the sanctuary and began to run
it as a tea room, something which has
proved very popular. All profits go to
the sanctuary, and the tea room also
offers the opportunity to sell donated
goods and to hold themed events
such as a Burns Night or quizzes.
To support this effort, we have also
recently established a charity shop in
nearbyHythe.
Keeping the sanctuary in the news is
vital. In order to attract donations, a
good relationship with the local press,
television and radio, and celebrities
is vital. We have had support from
Jo Brand, Brian May, Anita Dobson,
Pam Ferris and Roger Frost among
others, and this is crucial to raising our
profile. To further this goal, we have
a professionally designed sanctuary
website and are active on social media.
The lessons we have learnt
All these activities require time. It is
important for anyone establishing a
charity to realise how all-consuming
it may be. We wish to keep
administration costs as low as possible,
but this places immense pressure on
the key staff. Dedication to the mission
is essential. We are lucky in the loyal
staff we have attracted.
Above all, it is essential not to
compromise the core values of the
charity. We promise that every animal
that comes into our care will never be
put to sleep if a suitable home cannot
be found, either due to temperament,
advanced age or poor health. Instead,
they will spend the rest of their days
at the sanctuary as our special guests
and friends. We are also committed to
take in any animal that is bequeathed
to us in a will and to carry out the
owners’requests.
Although running the sanctuary is a
lovely way of life, especially when we
turn animals around, there is also the
downside when a little bird doesn’t
make it or one of our long-term friends
has to be put down. Would we change
anything? Only to start again with the
knowledge we have now. Hopefully,
with the help of our supporters, we
will continue long into the future,
never forgetting the aims on which the
charity was founded.
Above all, it is
essential not
to
compromise
the core
values of the
charity. We
promise that
every animal
who comes
into our care
will never be
put to sleep
Our veterinary
ambulance outside the
Park House
Clients with a patient at
the Lord Whisky Clinic
33HENRYSON FOODS INTERNATIONAL |
ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS
Managing Director Kate Wright
and her dog, Archie
We source quality ingredients
for sandwiches, baked goods
and ready meals
When Kate Wright’s father died suddenly in 2014, she
says she was completely unprepared to take over as
managing director. She had many happy memories
of the six years that they worked together, but found neither
of them had been very effective when it came to succession
planning. Under business pressures and with a grieving team,
Kate tells
The Parliamentary Review
that she made some
unfortunate snap decisions and instead should have focused on
continuity. Five years on, she believes that a healthy business
should be able to continue without any one individual – no
matter how knowledgeable or experienced they may be.
We import ingredients in containers by land and sea, store them and sell them on
to manufacturers, foodservice and wholesalers in pallet quantities.We are also
agents for a large Belgian egg processing group, having worked with them for
over 20 years. We remove the hassle from our customers’ businesses by auditing
the supply chain, sourcing new products and ensuring that all legislative and Brand
Reputation Compliance Global Standards are met. We also maintain surplus
stock so that we can meet customer needs when there are unexpected surges in
demand, which often happens in the food industry.
Flexibility and versatility
As a mum of two young children, flexible working is very important to me
personally but it is also something that I believe the whole team should enjoy.
FACTS ABOUT
HENRYSON FOODS
INTERNATIONAL
»Managing Director:
KateWright
»Founded in 2000
»Based in Tewkesbury,
Gloucestershire
»No. of employees: 7
»Turnover: £4 million, not
including commission sales
»BRCGS AA grade accredited
»AEO accredited
Henryson Foods
International
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
34 | HENRYSON FOODS INTERNATIONAL
Ourstaff can work their weekly hours
flexibly, taking time out when they
need to for school events or medical
appointments. We even have an
on-site creche room in case parents
need to bring children to work in
emergencies. Not only does this make
everyone happier, but it also conveys
a lot of advantages in practical terms.
For example, when staff choose their
own working hours, we are able to
cover a longer working day as people’s
hours overlap. Flexible working also
contributes to better staff retention as
it allows staff to combine work and
home life in a way that suits them.
The versatility of our team is what
enables the office to run smoothly.
With only seven people, it is important
that we can, to a certain extent,
do each other’s jobs. We train all
staff in a range of disciplines; for
example, everyone is trained to a
minimum of HACCP level 2, so that
they have the confidence to step
outside their own job role and take
responsibility for different areas of
the business when needed. We have
a company culture that is relaxed
and supportive when people make
mistakes and that encourages the
free flow of information between
staff. We link our annual bonuses to
the overall company performance so
that everyone is rewarded when the
company performs well, no matter
what their role.
Over the last three years, we have
added an extra one million pounds to
our turnover. It is important that we
maintain a steady growth trajectory
with a balanced customer portfolio as
a means of managing risk. I have seen
small and large businesses collapse
when they have been overreliant on
one large customer for sales and then
subsequently lost that customer.
The need to support SMEs
One of the biggest hurdles for small
businesses is that we must adhere
to the same legislative and industry
requirements as large companies but
with a fraction of the financial and
human resources. GDPR is a good
We meet regularly
to evaluate new and
existing products
The versatility
of the team is
what enables
the office to
run smoothly
BEST PRACTICE SPONSOR 2020
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
34 | HENRYSON FOODS INTERNATIONAL
Ourstaff can work their weekly hours
flexibly, taking time out when they
need to for school events or medical
appointments. We even have an
on-site creche room in case parents
need to bring children to work in
emergencies. Not only does this make
everyone happier, but it also conveys
a lot of advantages in practical terms.
For example, when staff choose their
own working hours, we are able to
cover a longer working day as people’s
hours overlap. Flexible working also
contributes to better staff retention as
it allows staff to combine work and
home life in a way that suits them.
The versatility of our team is what
enables the office to run smoothly.
With only seven people, it is important
that we can, to a certain extent,
do each other’s jobs. We train all
staff in a range of disciplines; for
example, everyone is trained to a
minimum of HACCP level 2, so that
they have the confidence to step
outside their own job role and take
responsibility for different areas of
the business when needed. We have
a company culture that is relaxed
and supportive when people make
mistakes and that encourages the
free flow of information between
staff. We link our annual bonuses to
the overall company performance so
that everyone is rewarded when the
company performs well, no matter
what their role.
Over the last three years, we have
added an extra one million pounds to
our turnover. It is important that we
maintain a steady growth trajectory
with a balanced customer portfolio as
a means of managing risk. I have seen
small and large businesses collapse
when they have been overreliant on
one large customer for sales and then
subsequently lost that customer.
The need to support SMEs
One of the biggest hurdles for small
businesses is that we must adhere
to the same legislative and industry
requirements as large companies but
with a fraction of the financial and
human resources. GDPR is a good
We meet regularly
to evaluate new and
existing products
The versatility
of the team is
what enables
the office to
run smoothly
35HENRYSON FOODS INTERNATIONAL |
ENVIRONMENT, FOOD & RURAL AFFAIRS
example of this – we took advice from
an external consultant on how to
implement employee contract changes
but this was costly; it would be hugely
beneficial for small businesses if there
was some form of tax relief or a
free government consultancy service
available to help ensure that we are
compliant with this kind of legislation.
This support is even more necessary in
the event of no-deal Brexit as, in our
experience, most companies have done
little to prepare for this eventuality –
not because they don’t want to but
because they simply do not have the
financial or human resources available
to divert into planning for multiple
outcome scenarios that may not come
to pass.
We import millions of euros’ worth
of goods from the EU each year, so
we have had no choice but to spend
time and money planning for Brexit.
This has covered everything from our
technical manager reviewing potential
label change requirements to our
finance manager modelling our cash
flow and profits based on new import
tariffs and a weakened GBP.
In 2018, we decided to apply for
Authorised Economic Operator
accreditation, which we successfully
obtained in May 2019. Holding this
accreditation demonstrates to our
suppliers and customers that we
understand HMRC customs procedures
and that we have effective controls
in place for managing imports and
exports. As with BRCGS, preparing for
the audit has taken a lot of time but it
has improved our processes and given
us total confidence in our systems.
Nonetheless, I fear that if there is a
no-deal exit, we will still face delays
on many products getting into the
UK, particularly those of animal origin
due, to the additional documentation
requirements and the fact that the
administrative infrastructure is not in
place on either side of the Channel
to issue or inspect the quantity of
documents that will need to be
incirculation.
While I feel confident that we will
overcome whatever challenges lie
ahead, I look forward to Brexit being
over so that we can fully concentrate
on sales and customer service. I hope
to continue the company’s growth so
that one day my children will have the
privilege of running the business if they
choose to do so.
We must adhere
to the same
legislative and
industry
requirements as
large companies
but with a
fraction of the
financial and
human
resources
Left: We are a small but
versatile team
Right: We supply over
100 tonnes of egg
products every week

www.henrysonfoods.co.uk

This article was sponsored by Henryson Foods International. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.



Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development