Business Leaders' forum

Tough year in prospect: Business Leaders’ Forum

By Michael Stones contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Business leaders, Mergers and acquisitions

This year will be prove challenging for food and drink manufacturers, predicted Paul Wilkinson, chair of the Food Manufacture Group’s Business Leaders’ Forum.

In this video interview, filmed after the Business Leaders’ Event in London last month, Wilkinson predicted three factors, in particular, would squeeze food and drink manufacturers’ business performance.

‘I think it’s going to be really hard’

“We are talking about deflation or no inflation, pressure from politicians​ [in advance of the 2015 general election] and the absence of getting prices increased,” ​said Wilkinson. “I think it’s going to be really hard.”

Wilkinson, who is also chair of Thorntons, contrasted the pressures bearing down on the industry with the apparent mood of optimism at the Business Leaders’ Forum.

Meanwhile, hot topics discussed at the forum included mergers and acquisitions​ – shortly before Premier Foods revealed its partnership​ with the Gores Group to run its Hovis and milling businesses – the industry’s relationship with politicians and criticisms over sugar.

The forum was sponsored by Agrantec, Intertek, Tata Consultancy Services, plus insurance firm Aon, Columbus IT and NSF International.

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