The Brexit impact so far: paperwork, process and higher prices

[Customs officer and driver]

"Good morning, sir!"

"Good morning"

"Since the Brexit, you're no longer allowed to take certain foods to Europe, like meat, fruits, vegetables, fishes. Those kind of stuff."

This has been the impact of Brexit so far: paperwork, long delivery times and higher prices.

"Welcome to the Brexit, sir. I'm sorry."

Britain's departure from the EU has triggered the biggest change in trade since it joined the bloc 48 years ago.

[British Cabinet Office Minister, Michael Gove]

"We expect that there will be significant additional disruption, particularly on the Dover-Calais route."

[British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson]

“There are problems at the moment caused by teething problems, people not filling in the right forms or misunderstandings."

According to real-time truck movement data, freight volumes moving between the two dropped 38% compared with the same time in January last year - here’s why.

Fishermen were the first workers to be hit, presented with a barrage of new health checks, certificates and customs declarations.

That delayed the movement of stocks to such an extent that they were rejected by European buyers as no longer fresh.

[Skipper, David Stevens] "In 1973, Ted Heath, he sacrificed fishing to get the deal to go into Europe. Coming out of Europe, Boris has done the same, but it's worse this time."

Since then other food producers – from cheese to high-end beef – have also been hit.

About a fifth of small and medium-sized businesses have stopped exporting to Europe for now, put off by costly and overwhelming paperwork.

[Jordon Freight, Co-Director, John Swallow]

"We are rebuilding supply chains already. You know, you're seeing these boats come from Rosslare. You probably... there's some of the unaccompanied hauliers already, in advance of this, increasing their fleet of trailers. So you're going to see a big shift away from Dover, I think. People built their businesses around that free-flowing Channel, and so just to put it up overnight is really going to hurt some businesses."

The friction is forcing some companies to re-think their supply chains, particularly British firms that risk tariffs by selling goods into the EU that were made from materials originally imported from Asia.

Online clothing giant ASOS expects a $21 million tariff hit, for example, while Japanese carmaker Nissan plans to source more batteries from Britain to avoid tariffs on electric cars.

Probably the most obvious impact can be seen in the ports.

Ireland used to ship via Britain as it was speedier, but large ferries are now shipping goods directly between the EU member and the rest of the bloc, cutting out new paperwork and delays.

In Ireland, gaps have begun appearing on supermarket shelves as retailers struggle to cope with the customs paperwork.

It’s a situation that could deteriorate, after a three-month grace period for Northern Ireland supermarkets expires.

Video Transcript

- Good morning, sir.

- Good morning.

- Since the Brexit, you're no longer allowed to take certain foods to Europe, like meats, fruits, vegetables, fishes and those kinds of stuff.

- This has been the impact of Brexit so far, paperwork, long delivery times, and higher prices.

- Welcome to the Brexit, sir. I'm sorry.

- Oh, my god.

- Britain's departure from the EU has triggered the biggest change in trade since it joined the bloc 48 years ago.

MICHAEL GOVE: It is the case that in the weeks ahead we expect that there will be significant additional disruption, particularly on the Dover-Calais route.

BORIS JOHNSON: There are problems at the moment caused by teething problems, people not filling in the right forms, or misunderstandings.

- According to real-time truck movement data, freight volumes moving between the two dropped 38% compared with the same time in January last year. Here's why. Fishermen were the first workers to be hit, presented with a barrage of new health checks, certificates, and customs declarations. That delayed the movement of stocks to such an extent that they were rejected by European buyers as no longer fresh.

DAVID STEVENS: In 1973, Ted Heath, he sacrificed fishing to get the deal to go into Europe. Coming out of Europe, Boris has done the same, but it's worse this time.

- Since then other food producers, from cheese to high-end beef, have also been hit. About a fifth of small to medium-sized businesses have stopped exporting to Europe for now, put off by costly and overwhelming paperwork.

JOHN SWALLOW: This. I have this one. And we have this one. We are rebuilding supply chains already. You're seeing these boats come from Rossiare. There's some of the unaccompanied hauliers already, in advance of this, of increasing their fleet of trailers. So you're going to see a big shift away from Dover, I think. People built their businesses around that free-flowing Channel, and so just to put it up overnight is really going to hurt some businesses.

- The friction is forcing some companies to re-think their supply chains, particularly British firms that risk tariffs by selling goods into the EU that were made from materials originally imported from Asia. Online clothing giant ASOS, for example, expects a $21 million tariff hit, while Japanese car maker Nissan plans to source more batteries from Britain to avoid tariffs on electric cars.

Probably the most obvious impact can be seen in the ports. Ireland used to ship via Britain as it was speedier, but large ferries are now shipping goods directly between the EU member and the rest of the bloc, cutting out paperwork and delays. In Ireland, gaps have begun appearing on supermarket shelves, as retailers struggle to cope with the customs paperwork. It's a situation that could deteriorate, after a three-month grace period for Northern Ireland supermarkets expires.