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What does Brexit mean for British Pasta?

Updated: Dec 14, 2021

Did you see that Pastificio Carleschi was mentioned in a Sunday Times Article on the 14th of November (2021)? Continue reading to find out what was said...

Italian suppliers say congestion at British ports and driver shortages are leading to a dramatic fall in exports to the UK. Since January, goods entering Britain need to face hurdles from customs declarations to product safety certificates, food inspections and rules-of-origin checks. One Italian firm said it is now easier to export to Japan - and warned Britons to brace themselves for “relatively empty shelves for some time and big cost increases”.

An Italian deli in Sheffield said an olive oil brand and confectionary company, both from the Lazio region, had stopped supplying them after Brexit because they said it was “too much paperwork” for a small order of 800 bottles.

Pasta is consumed by about two in three Britons at least once a week, and it has been one of the most noticeable gaps on shelves since the start of the pandemic. While initially the issues were caused by stockpiling, more recent shortages have been traced to logistical problems due to Brexit and Covid.

Natasha Linhart, Chief executive of Atlante in Bologna, which supplies supermarkets - including Sainsburys - with its own-brand Italian pasta and tomatoes said it had 70 containers stuck at Felixstowe port, when they would have previously passed through without delay. Linhart said “When you go to buyers and retailers and say ‘I need a 30% price increase’, they almost die. We’ve been offered much better prices from Japan for Italian products. I think that the UK consumers will continue to see relatively empty shelves for some time - and big cost increases”.

UK-based Eurostar Commodities said that it had stopped importing pasta from Italy for a small supermarket chain last week. The price had become so high, they had been forced to find a new manufacturer. Jason Bull, a director at Eurostar Commodities, said “Pasta prices have increased dramatically due to the shortage of durum wheat, so we have temporarily stopped bringing it in”.

The easiest solution to this shortage of imported pasta is to choose us! We at Pastificio Carleschi make organic dry pasta, using ancient heritage grains like Einkorn, Emmer and Spelt sourced directly from farmers and millers in the UK. Our founder, Giovanni Carleschi, said: “We are not copying Italian pasta. We are creating a new breed, redefining a historical Italian product by using local produce to create a British alternative”. Since our pastas are sourced and produced within the UK, they won’t be subjugated to the same harsh conditions as international goods, they won’t have the same carbon footprint, will benefit our environment, community, immediate economy and hopefully the product price won’t suffer the same increase.

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Really interesting post. I have been discussing this with my customers recently.

They had no idea that we are potentially facing a pasta and olive oil shortage and big price rises.

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