Govt support required to restore supply chains immediately; or India could run out of stocks in 7-10 days: Britannia MD Varun Berry

Government support and intervention is required to restore supply chains immediately or the country could run out of stocks of packaged foods in the next 7-10 days, biscuits and dairy giant Britannia Industries managing director Varun Berry said on Thursday, as supply chain disruptions continue to be crippled amidst the Covid-19 outbreak.

“If even one link in supply chain is broken, India could run out of stocks of packaged foods in the next 7-10 days. The Centre has issued permissions but we need support at district level,” Berry said.

While the Central government has issued all necessary permi sions, Berry said the immediate need of the hour is that it be percolated down to district level authorities. “This will help us kick start production and ensure uninterrupted supply of essential packaged foods throughout the country,” he added.

Stating that the food industry supply chain is disaggregated and dependent on inter-state movement of goods, he said owing to the nature of the raw materials, inventories across the chain are low. He added while Britannia factories are primed to manufacture products at this time with all hygiene and social distancing protocols in place, the company also needs support from district authorities in allowing factory workers to travel to the premises with appropriate safeguards.

Over the past two days, foods and beverages makers, agri products companies, ingredient suppliers and their packaging partners have escalated concerns of supply disruptions to the Prime Minister’s office, Ministry of Consumer Affairs and Food Processing Ministry, with representations through industry bodies PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PHDCCI), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and All India Food Processors’ Association (AIFPA) and the US India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF).


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