Helen Dickinson, BRC's CEO, took part in the Government's daily briefing to the nation on Saturday 21 March, alongside Secretary of State for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food George Eustice and Stephen Powis, National Medical Director at NHS England

Key messages from Helen's comments were:

  • "I want to reassure everybody that people right across the food industry, from growers, packers, producers, distributers, drivers and the people right at the front line in our stores are doing everything they can to make sure we have the food that we all need."
  • "We're seeing a peak in demand like at Christmas - without the four month build up in planning. We've been able to do that in two weeks."

  • "There is plenty of food in the supply chain; the issue is around people and lorries - so, getting the food onto the shelves, which is why we've seen some shortages in some areas."

  • "What's been vital over the last few days has been the dialogue we've had with government. They've really listened carefully to the things industry has highlighted that would make it easier to increase capacity. The key is not just listening, but acting quickly - for example lifting curfew hours for deliveries. There's a whole list of things where we've raised an issue and it's been addressed quickly." 

  • There is a billion pounds more food in people's houses than there was three weeks ago - so we should make sure we eat some of it

She concluded: "It's a great opportunity to call out to all the people who work in retail businesses and right across the supply chain who have been doing an amazing job over the last couple of weeks in ensuring we all have access to the food that we need."

You can watch the full briefing below: