Over three-quarters of UK shoppers are concerned about the price of supermarket food and drink in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
A survey of 7,000 UK shoppers by Kantar’s Worldpanel has found grocery bills are front of mind for many UK consumers in the event of a no-deal Brexit, with 78% of respondents saying they are “worried about higher prices for supermarket food and drink” in the event of no deal.
The research, released today by Kantar, also found 63% of respondents were worried about the price of clothing increasing in the event of the UK exiting the EU without a deal.
However, only 22% of those surveyed said they would be actively considering cutting their supermarket spending in the event of no deal.
Kantar said 62% of all fresh food currently sold in the UK is imported, with most of that coming from EU countries. The research found 46% of imported fresh food in the UK comes from Spain, while 22% comes from the Netherlands.
Ten per cent of survey respondents have started to stockpile “non-perishable food cupboard essentials”, with a further 25% considering it.
A number of retailers have begun taking “extraordinary measures” to prepare for a non-deal Brexit, Kantar said, such as stockpiling non-perishable goods; testing new, longer lasting fruit and vegetables; and “lowering standards and rejecting fewer fresh items based on ‘wonky’ size and shapes”.
Co-authors of Kantar’s report, Fraser McKevitt and Ray Gaul, said: “The decision to leave the EU has affected consumers in different ways, but it’s apparent that ongoing uncertainty is already having a definite impact on purchasing trends and behaviours.
“From a supplier’s perspective, there is little doubt among retailers, producers and farmers that Brexit will result in a significant disruption to the UK’s food supply, including unharvested produce and empty supermarket shelves.”
The UK is currently scheduled to leave the EU on March 29.