Ocado warns it is unable to prepare for Brexit border delays

London, UK: Ocado chief executive Tim Steiner, speaking on BBC’s Today programme, warned it was “just not possible” for the company to prepare for huge delays at the border, with inadequate storage to keep more than a week of stocks.

“To buy a week of inventory we would have to double the size of our facilities and our facilities are full so we’d have to buy replica facilities for that one week. It’s just not possible,” Steiner told the BBC.

Meanwhile, Jim Gouldie, supply chain and technical services director at food distribution firm Bidfood, said that the company was struggling to get the details it needed on border arrangements.

He said that the company had spent money in March, as the Brexit date approached, that “it would not get back”.

“The question is whether companies will do that again for something that may not happen,” Gouldie said.

Kent County Council leader Paul Carter says he has not had a firm promise that the council will get the millions it will need to be ready for a no-deal Brexit.

“With all the Brexit shenanigans going on in Parliament and the change of prime minister, it means that getting those assurances from ministers is exceedingly difficult. “

Carter stressed that it was still not certain that crucial extra customs officers would be delivered on time.

“We’ve yet to have confirmation that is the case and it has caused quite a lot of consternation and frustration in the past.”


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