Bestway’s Pervez calls for balanced supply

Sensible trading is needed to help the UK’s supply chain stocked throughout the coronavirus crisis, according to Dawood Pervez.

Bestway’s managing director says there’s enough stock to meet all demand and that taking a balanced approach to supply will make sure independent stores aren’t left with empty shelves.

There have been several occasions since the pandemic began when goods-in to Bestway have been cancelled or short delivered due to supply chain – and Pervez believes that situation is avoidable by working together.

“Local independent retail stores and community shops are proving to be essential to their local communities and it’s vital we can keep their shelves stocked,” said Pervez.

“These retailers account for £40bn of the UK’s grocery shopping basket and by their very nature are as important right now as the supermarket multiples – if not more so – as people stay as close to their homes as possible.

“This shouldn’t be a question of who shouts loudest and nor should it be about the commercials of who has the biggest purchasing power.

“It’s about sensible trading to cover all the national and local networks.  Right now, we all need to work together to ensure an even distribution of inventory to guarantee continuity of supply and get everyday staples to those who need them.

“For us – it’s not just about supplying the independent retailers although this is a critical channel, but we’re also supplying care homes, prisons, and some school sites who all depend on our availability.”

Bestway is doing its bit to raise the issue at government level and have been supported by FWD in its attempts to preach the importance of supporting the independent sector.

FWD Chief Executive James Bielby says the federation is making it clear how important wholesale is to the nation – now more than ever.

“We’re working closely with government to highlight the role wholesalers play in supplying independent retailers and the need to ensure a breadth of supply across the whole grocery market,” said Bielby.

“Independent retailers reach communities not served by the supermarkets and supply needs to be recognised and protected, so consumers have a choice of stores and are able to shop close to where they live in line with government guidelines.

“Government must ensure wholesalers have access to a full range and quantity of products at a time when manufacturers are producing fewer SKUs in smaller quantities. Without support for the independent sector many vulnerable communities won’t have access to the products they need.”

Bestway coronavirus covid-19 Dawood Pervez FWD James Bielby supply wholesale