This is the lowest net confidence rate since the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in Q2 of 2020 (-65.2%) and the biggest drop in confidence since the FDF began reporting in 2018. The report summarises the key opportunities and challenges for the sector every quarter.
Severe supply chain disruption was the biggest cause for concern, particularly the transportation of goods with 93% experiencing delayed or missed outbound deliveries. An overwhelming majority of businesses anticipate continued price rises, with 97% of respondents expecting consumer price inflation to increase in Q4 2021.
According to the report, half of respondents are expecting the permanent supply to decrease and 54% expect the temporary supply to decrease in Q4 2021.
Ian Wright, chief executive of the FDF, said: “These results - compiled before the Prime Minister’s disappointing announcement- demonstrate that confidence levels across our sector have been hit by continuing supply chain disruption.
“On top of this, the confection of increasing uncertainty about Omicron, the UK’s changing trading relationships, and the re-ignition of inflation, all threaten to undermine resilience across the sector. Many businesses now expect disruption and reduced service levels to continue right through 2022 and into 2023.”