Increased competition, rising costs, economic concerns and changes in the consumer’s taste all characterise the evolving nature of the food and drink service industry. Companies within this sector must maintain a firm grasp on changing consumer needs and taste trends to continually develop food and drink that meets consumer demand. Today, operational challenges include food safety, consolidation, expansion, and customer loyalty. Brand awareness is a major focus as food and drink businesses look for new opportunities to build market share.

Customs and international trade issues

Although duty rates have fallen significantly over recent years, this has not extended to the food and drink sector, where import duties are amongst the highest in the tariff, with every indication that they will continue to be so for the foreseeable future. Alcoholic beverage producers also have to contend with excise duties.

Most countries lay down official controls on imports of food and drink products – most especially those of animal origin intended for human consumption. In practice, for food and drink producers, this means the operation of an audit and inspection system as well as regular monitoring at all stages of production, processing and distribution.

Solutions to help you succeed

The customs legislation in this industry sector is complex and subject to sudden change. Documentary and other procedures reflect this complexity and frequently cause problems for business. We can help food & drink companies plan for legislative changes before they happen. We can assist food & drink companies to put in place systems that maximise customs refunds and minimise exposures to customs duties and levies.

Agricultural and food products are subject to certain import and export controls, such as import and export licences, certificates of origin, countervailing charges and pre- shipments inspections. We can assist in ensuring that our clients are compliant with this myriad of requirements.

We can help producers of alcoholic beverages minimise their excise duty payments; maximise drawback and offset losses.