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Nondoes Chicken

18th Aug 2021

The South African, Portuguese-inspired, Peri-Peri chicken restaurant chain, Nando's, is the latest company to be hit by supply chain complications, caused by Brexit and staff completing COVID-isolation periods.


As a result, they have announced the temporary closure of around 50 of their 400 UK outlets including their Manchester Arndale and Oxford Road branches. Their Northern Ireland restaurants, which effectively remain within the EU's single market for goods, are not affected.


According to their food suppliers, 2 Sisters Food Group, Avara, and Moy Park, disruption to the supply chain, as a result of Brexit, has largely been hidden due to COVID Lockdowns and the so-called "Pingdemic", with 15% of their workforce already having left the country following Britain's withdrawal from the European Union; a situation also mirrored across the haulage industry.



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Poultry suppliers had previously warned that the second half of 2021 would see the food shortages we are now experiencing, with Ranjit Singh Boparan (the 2 Sisters Food Group's boss, dubbed the "Chicken King"), stating at the time "we’re just about coping, but I can see if no support is forthcoming – and urgently – from government, then shelves will be empty, food waste will rocket simply because it cannot be processed, or delivered, and the shortages we saw last year will be peanuts in comparison to what could come."


Reiterating the warning he had made before the Referendum, the chicken magnate - who also supplies KFC and Tesco (where there are also shortages) - had previously warned that "Brexit was a factor in people not wanting to come to work in this country anymore or were not even allowed to work in this country anymore. A lot of people have gone back to the countries they’ve come from and actually they don’t want to come back.”


Coupled with the "Pingdemic" reducing their already depleted workforce even further, "the critical labour issue alone" has meant they have finally fallen off the "tightrope we walk every week at the moment." 


Apart from the obvious exception of Wetherspoons, the hospitality industry in Manchester has almost unanimously been outspoken against Brexit, with an estimated 65% of the workforce in Manchester's hotels, restaurants and bars, previously coming from the European Union, and Pep Guardiola's Catalan fine-dining restaurant Enxaneta announcing its temporary closure in June; stating that since "Brexit it's been very difficult to get staff from Spain" to replace those "who decided to go back to Barcelona, and decided not to come back."

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