Industry warned of ‘potential’ turkey shortage

06/12/2018 - 09:56
Operators and consumers alike could be hit by a “potential” turkey shortage this Christmas, as it’s revealed that the UK has the “lowest number of domestic turkey producers on record in recent years”.

Also up against businesses is the fact that three quarters of supply from Brazilian producers is currently banned, putting EU producers under more pressure.

According to purchasing company Beacon, the UK eats approximately 10 million turkeys each year, and at least 76% of Brits are expected to eat it come Christmas Day.

However, increased seasonal demand is reducing availability and driving up prices which could, Beacon says, “reach as far as the everyday consumer.”

Purchasing manager Alice Bexon commented: “(Beacon) insight implies that we may well see a shortage of turkeys this Christmas as the result of a culmination of different global factors in 2018.

“While large retailers will have their turkey quota already assured, we may see independent retailers and hospitality businesses being hit hardest by lowered stock levels and increased prices.

“These increases may have to be passed on to the consumer in order to make ends meet in an already challenging and competitive market.

“This comes at a time when economic uncertainty is at its highest. With Brexit just around the corner, the future of supply chains - particularly in the hospitality sector - is under question.

“Coupled with increased costs being seen across many food and drink items, we may see Brits swapping their traditional turkey for alternatives such as goose, chicken or vegetarian options. Family feasts around the country could look quite different this Christmas.”

According to a recent poll, Brits are becoming ‘bored’ traditional Christmas foods so this could be the excuse they need to try new foods.

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