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Will Brexit affect the packaging industry?

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As Prime Minister, Theresa May has now triggered Article 50, there is much debate about what a post-EU world will look like, but there seems to be no clarity about what life will be like once the UK has officially left the EU.

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One concern which has been highlighted by the packaging industry is the concern over the status of EU workers in the UK and the flexibility of labour. There also concerns that manufacturing, warehousing and distribution will be short of workers if the work permits criteria changes.

However, there have been signs this week that the government’s attitude is softening. Brexit secretary, David Davis said when speaking on BBC Question Time: “But the simple truth is that we have to manage this problem. You’ve got industries dependent on migrants. You’ve got social welfare, the National Health Service. You have to make sure they continue to work.”

The United Kingdom’s packaging industry has a huge influence on the domestic economy, which is valued between £11bn – £12bn annually, it should not be misjudged, and the sector is dependent on the fortunes and trust of its customers, even though many of them may be taking a view on their trading activity with the UK.

Experts have predicted that food prices are set to rise as a result of Brexit even if trade deals are struck. The UK imports agriculture products and food worth £47.5bn with 71% from the EU.

Nevertheless, pro-leave supporters claim that prices would fall as high tariffs on goods imported outside the UK are removed.

We have already seen pack sizes being hit by Brexit, with brands finding other ways to counter the higher cost of manufacturing without passing this cost onto the consumer. These high processes have also led to some brands in dispute with retailers, and some are disappearing from online stores as well as from the shelf.

Despite the uncertainty of what Brexit has in store for the packaging industry, there are many ways to cut costs. Using PVC shrink wrap film can cut a number of costs while still providing manufacturers with a cost-effective packaging solution. This type of shrink wrap offers a film with a gloss as well as being transparent and provides a quality packaging solution.


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