France’s food industry body, ANIA (Association Nationale des Industries Alimentaires) expects the country’s wine, dairy and bakery-pastry sectors are likely to be those most impacted by the UK voting to leave the European Union.
Its comments follow the publication of data by French trade-related credit insurance solutions firm, Euler Hermes, showing that up to EUR400m (US$441.8m) could be wiped off France’s food exports during the period 2017-2019 as a result of Brexit. Only the Netherlands’ exports to the UK are predicted to suffer to a greater extent.
This is based largely on the prospect of lower demand from the UK given the expected economic slowdown and possible recession, the weakening of sterling in relation to the euro resulting in a decline in purchasing power in the UK and the introduction of trade barriers.
Currently, 15% of France’s food exports are bound for the UK.
“Despite a great deal of uncertainty over the conditions relating to the UK coming out of the EU, in the food industry, the sectors that could be the most impacted are naturally those which contribute the most to France’s trade balance – notably wines and dairy products,” ANIA revealed.
Wines would be hardest-hit (40% of the estimated export trade loss), followed by dairy products (14%) and the bakery-pastry segment (11.4%) would also be significantly impacted.