Take part in Food Manufacture’s business survey

By Mike Stones

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Food manufacture Grocery think-tank igd Supermarket

Food Manufacture's business survey will chart the mood of UK food and drink manufacturing
Food Manufacture's business survey will chart the mood of UK food and drink manufacturing
How do you rate the prospects for your food and drink business over the year ahead? Taking part in Food Manufacture’s 2013 exclusive State-of-the-industry survey will allow you to compare your views with other industry professionals.

Our annual survey​ tracks business confidence in the food and drink manufacturing sector. We want your help to chart the mood of the industry.

At first sight, the prospects for the UK food and drink sector look challenging to say the least.

Tesco recently reported the biggest profits fall​ in its history and announced it decision to pull out of its US business Fresh & Easy at an estimated cost of £1.2bn.

Also Asda and Morrisons have also lost customers over recent months compared with last year.

But there are growth areas – not least the growth of online sales.

Value of online food and grocery sales

After Morrisons released news of its new 25-year deal with online distribution firm Ocado, grocery think-tank IGD predicted the value of online food and grocery sales would reach £11.1bn by 2017. The current value is estimated at £5.6bn.

Richard Wallace, online retail analyst with the IGD, said: “At IGD we see the online channel as relatively immature, with retailers around the world trying out many different models,” said Wallace. “Retailers will seek to meet shoppers’ changing needs with what we call ‘multi-channel, multi-format’ solutions. Online grocery shopping will be an increasingly important part of building loyalty.”

Convenience store sales are also showing strong growth.

But there is no denying that the UK economy is flatlining, leading consumers to economise in all possible areas.

Then there are manufacturers’ volatile commodity costs and the rising price of energy.

Access to finance is also proving challenging for many small to medium-sized food manufacturing businesses.

Neither is Premier Foods alone among food and drink manufacturers in grappling with large debt and the challenge of meeting pension provisions.

And, even with the new Groceries Code Adjudicator Christine Tacon – who will soon start to investigate supermarkets’ alleged abuse of power – life is undeniably tough for manufacturers.

Supply chains

Also, there is the continuing legacy of the horsemeat scandal and its effects on consumers’ confidence in UK food and drink products and the supply chains that deliver them.

So, let us know what you think about the prospects for the year ahead. Take part in the survey here​.

Food Manufacture’s​ 2013 State-of-the-industry survey will only take a few minutes to complete.

Taking part will give you a chance to win £100 to spend at Amazon, if you win our free draw.

While Food Manufacture​ is seeking views through a simple tick box exercise, there is also the opportunity to register individual comments on the survey. However, to encourage openness, we would like to reassure respondents of the anonymity of their response. No mention will be made of either individual’s names or companies in the published results. We are solely looking for general trends that are of interest to our readership.

Last year’s survey ‘Turning the screw’ published in Food Manufacture​ revealed a significantly more subdued picture than the year before.

But what will this year bring? The results of this year’s survey will be analysed and compared with those of last year to hightlight significant changes in the sector.

We look forward to hearing from you.

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