Remember the Early Bird

John Weedon, Managing Director of the Weedon Group, considers what businesses should be doing during the Coronavirus lock-down.

Throughout the Coronavirus pandemic, we in the Weedon Group have continued to produce packaging for food and drink manufacturers and to keep online retail deliveries flowing – often within tighter than usual deadlines and sometimes in innovative ways.

For example, we are producing different types of packaging to suit new situations, such as one-trip corrugated trays for food deliveries to the home, to replace plastic containers which could pass infection. And we have developed a corrugated board standee to mark the safe distance between individuals at work or when standing in shopping queues. Like everyone else, we have been doing our bit to help meet immediate needs.

In the midst of a crisis, it’s easy to focus on the here and now. How do you keep everyone safe? Can your business keep operating? What about cash flow? Do you need to furlough employees? Where do you source supplies? But British business must not lose sight of the future.

The lock-down will end. Business will ramp up. Customers will want – and be able – to buy your products again. As we return to something approaching normality, the big question then will be – are you ready? Will you be in recovery mode, playing catch up? Or will you be in a good position to hit the deck running? Are you using this time to examine how you could improve your business and increase efficiency?

The creative expertise and experience that has enabled us to help our customers during the lock-down can be applied to solve ongoing packaging issues when this current crisis is over.

For example, even before the outbreak, we were aware that many of our customers were frustrated by their inability to get new products to market fast. They were worrying about how they could reduce costs to help drive cash flow. And they were concerned about potential corrugated or paper supply issues.

As an independent corrugated packaging manufacturer, we can help drive your profitability in these three areas.

Speed to market – with in-house teams working within the major retailers and unique expertise in retailer requirements, we know how to circumnavigate the artwork and design roadblocks put up by retailers. We offer all elements of design and production under one roof, so we can control schedules and reduce lead-times. And, because we are independent, we can be very flexible. The combination of all these factors means we can move really swiftly when required!

Reduction of packaging costs – our creative design company, i2i europe, offers full-blown packaging reviews to help you identify where waste can be eradicated and resources saved. We are at the forefront of the drive to cut out over-packaging and we are experts in right-sizing. We have introduced environmentally friendly and economical new materials like Less-flute and EL flute. And we have the facilities to test packaging scientifically and provide performance guarantees that the materials we recommend will be up to the job.

Continuity of supply – as an independent corrugated manufacturer with our own in-house corrugator, we can control our supply and we can be flexible in response to our customers’ needs.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, our customers really matter to us. So you may find us more co-operative and helpful than some of the multinational packaging groups!

We can help you streamline your packaging and ensure it is cost effective, so that it does not hold up your speed to market or eat into your profits. Now is the time to plan to rebuild your business on strong and efficient foundations so that, when the UK opens again for business, you are already on the starting blocks. There will be opportunities to be seized when lock-down is eased. Remember the early bird…

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