Aimed at drivers, warehouse, planning and workshop teams – roles vital to the successful running food and drink supply chains – the scheme will top up sick pay for staff to ensure they do not continue to work if they need to self-isolate.
Sick pay for frontline staff off for two week will be no less than £300 or 80% of their full-time weekly wage. Employees who receive £300 or above while off work sick will receive the higher payment.
Chief executive Steve Granite said the business wanted to acknowledge those members of staff that are putting themselves at potential risk to keep supply chains running.
‘Working around the clock’
“Our teams are working around the clock to keep food, pharmaceutical and other essential manufacturers stocked with ingredients to ensure products are produced and on the shelves,” said Granite.
“We want to acknowledge the dedication and commitment that our frontline teams are showing and reassure them that if they need to self-isolate, they will be supported while they stay at home and recover.”
Commenting on the stress and burden the outbreak of COVID-19 has had on businesses in the UK, he admitted that not all companies are in the position to help their staff in the same way Abbey Logistics can.
“It is extremely important that the UK Government provides our sector the financial support it needs to get through this crisis, and not burden the industry with more debt from loans that some companies will have to call upon just to keep afloat,” he added “The sector needs grants, not debt.”
‘Grind to a halt’
“Transport companies are indispensable, without them the country would grind to a halt, we are under immense financial pressure at the best of times and even more so during the current situation.”
The unprecedented circumstances brought about by the global pandemic has sparked greater degree of collaboration within the food and drink supply chain.
To this end, a new emergency working group to ensure the industry can continue to feed the nation has been formed by consultancy group Scala to help strengthen manufacturers’ and suppliers’ links with retailers, foodservice and logistics companies.
The group will coordinate industry initiatives, share ideas and collaborate with one another and the wider industry. Its goal will be supplying the UK with food and drink and ensuring businesses and consumers have the essentials they need to survive the pandemic.