Fiddich Review Centre

How the weak pound is affecting Norfolk firms

4:27 PM September 26, 2022

The plunging pound is giving local firms a short-term boost to their export markets but there are fears about the effects that currency instability will have on businesses. 

On Monday morning (September 26) the pound fell to a record low against the US dollar and also slumped against other foreign currencies including the Euro.

At the time of writing £1 buys $1.0789 or €1.1182. 

The English Whisky Company, which exports to Europe and China, benefited from its products being cheaper for its overseas customers.  

Photo essay. The English Whisky Company at St George's Distillery, Roudham, near Thetford. Owner And

Andrew Nelstrop is concerned about potential rising costs
– Credit: Archant

“I’ve been looking at all the currency rates and obviously the pound has fallen which makes it a lot easier for our export customers to buy our products,” said Andrew Nelstrop, managing director at the Roudham distillery.

“It also makes it more expensive for us to buy anything we might need from abroad.

“In practice we don’t buy much from abroad – I think we have one type of bottle that we buy from France – all our packaging is UK based, so we’re less affected by it than others probably.”

He added: “It will affect the business a little bit, if the pound stays this weak then fuel prices will rise again – so ultimately it will affect us all.

“If anything it will help as an exporter, it will help us briefly, because obviously for our customers abroad it is costing them less to buy our whisky.”  

Jenny Hanlon, from brewery Adnams, explained that the company both benefits from a cheaper export market, but is also seeing import costs rising. 

She said that although the company sources as much as possible locally “there is still a need for our business to buy from overseas”. 

Jenny Hanlon, Adnams chief financial officer

Jenny Hanlon, Adnams chief financial officer

– Credit: Anthony Cullen/Adnams

Ms Hanlon continued: “From a customer perspective we count over 30 countries in our export market. 

“Therefore we experience currency risk from both our supply side and our customers.  

“We work hard to reduce our exposure to any volatilities in the market place, and currency is no exception.  

“The recent lack of stability in the currency market has placed more emphasis on this area.  

“With our close and long standing supplier and customer relationships, we are working hard to minimise any impact these currency swings could have on the business.”

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