“Brexit has been challenging for our company concerning some aspects, but we are also adjusting our processes in a positive manner,” says Andy Burton, Managing Director at Double H Nurseries, a wholesale plant nursery in the UK. Especially when it comes to importing plants into the UK, Brexit has had a severe impact and reduced the company’s flexibility. Burton explains how Brexit has impacted Double H Nurseries, and how they are responding to the these changes, ultimately improving the company’s efficiency.
Andy Burton in the greenhouse.
Reduced flexibility and higher plant waste
Burton explains that the process of importing plants into the UK has become much more challenging. “Because of Brexit, we have much more customs paperwork that needs to be arranged and declarations we need to get done. In addition, the plants need to go through a phytosanitary check, all of which is leading to a significant amount of administration. For example, when there is a delivery from The Netherlands to the UK, it first has to get inspected by Dutch authorities in order to get a Dutch certificate. But then the delivery sometimes needs to be inspected in the UK as well. All of this is adding time to our orders and reducing our flexibility. We used to be able to quickly change volumes or add things to orders, but now that we need to plan ahead that flexibility is just not possible anymore. Yet, we find it important to maintain our service level for our customers. Therefore, we are forced to hold bigger stocks, which is then sometimes leading to higher plant waste.”
Adjusting to Brexit
While Brexit has been challenging, Burton is also seeing the positives and is adjusting to the future opportunities it is presenting them. “Some companies are struggling with labour issues as a result of Brexit, but we are very lucky to not be affected as we have a consistent workforce. As for the imports, we are hoping that the situation will improve in the future. In the meantime we are doing a lot of work here to streamline to process as much as possible, in order to be more efficient. So as a result of Brexit, we have invested in our systems and data in order to streamline our processes. We are also working on future expansions in order to become more efficient and are improving our e-commerce. Overall, we are making many adjustments because of Brexit that will be beneficial for the company’s future.”
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Double H Nurseries