Import and distribution company gets the beers in

Brighouse-based James Clay and Sons, a beer importer and distributor, has secured its EU supply chain with the acquisition of Rarter Bond Ltd.

The deal will increase James Clay and Sons’ capacity to stock-build ahead of supply chain disruption, while allowing it to ‘clear’ imported stock into the UK in-house.

It should also give the firm more space to invest in stock holding to ensure strong availability at the start of 2021, ensuring the supplies of beers can continue uninterrupted into the UK.

Rarter Bond is a specialist excise bond company operating out of a 100,000 sq ft facility at Leeds Bradford Airport.

The business has managed James Clay And Sons’ non-EU imports for many years and is well positioned to support its EU imports as well, as Britain starts a new chapter outside of the EU Customs Union.

Rarter Bond will also strengthen James Clay and Sons’ customs and excise capabilities and provide the platform to invest in the customs software required to clear goods into the UK with HMRC, at the end of the transition period.

James Clay and Sons MD, James Clay, said: “Our Brexit stock build goal is to hold an additional four to six weeks’ worth of stock for all key lines, over one million bottles of beer, no mean feat as we hold the largest range of beers in the UK.

“Brexit will undoubtably place severe stress on supply chains in the UK. In the short-term, delays are expected at ports; and hauliers anticipate lorries being limited to one round trip to Europe per week – not the current two.

“Alongside maintaining a strong working relationship with our haulier to mitigate this, Rarter Bond will provide extensive storage capacity for Brexit stock building, which began in early November.

“Our overseas brewery partners are being immensely supportive in our challenge to ensure consistent availability over the next six months by brewing additional beer to cover our Brexit stock build, by adjusting their paperwork processes or by making changes to labelling.”