People who enjoy a nice packet of crisps or portion of chips could be noticing a difference soon as sunflower oil supplies run low because of the Ukraine war. One firm that bottles cooking oil for shops in the UK says it has only a few weeks of sunflower oil supply left.

Edible Oils, which is the biggest company of its kind in the country, said the war in Ukraine was causing supply disruption. As a result the firm, which packages 75 per cent of the UK retail market’s oil, is turning to other oils to keep things running.

The war is having such an effect because Ukraine and Russia produce most of the world’s sunflower oil. The war is disrupting exports, the firm told the BBC. Firms that make foods containing sunflower oil – from crisps to cereal bars – are changing their recipes.

Read More:Woman’s bid to rescue her family from Ukraine is halted by visa hold-up

And that could be a problem for those with food allergies. The Food Standards Agency has advised people to be alert to extra information from shops and food makers.

Kim Matthews, commercial director at Edible Oils, said 80 per cent of the global supply of sunflower oil comes out of Russia and Ukraine. “So obviously, with everything going on out there, we physically can’t get sunflower to be coming out of the country,” he told the BBC.

“From a UK consumer perspective, sunflower oil is the biggest oil. It’s used more than anything else,” said Mr Matthews. “It’s a fast moving situation. We’re still trying to see if we can get some more but it’s looking very tight.”

Edible Oils Ltd has turned to 24/7 production to try to make sure it has plenty of rapeseed and other oils to put on the shelves when the sunflower oil runs out.

“Sunflower is great because you can cook at high temperatures. Rapeseed is very similar. You can do exactly the same with it,” he said.

“At the moment, Ukrainian farmers should be sowing the seeds now for the harvest in October and November. Clearly that’s not going to happen… we’re probably going to miss the season so we could be impacted for 12 to 18 months.”

Founder of The British Snack Company, Tom Locke, said: “The supply of sunflower oil is something that we’ve always taken for granted. There’s an incredible scramble. Everyone’s doing the same thing.

“So while sunflower oil is impossible to get at the moment, rapeseed oil is possible but difficult to get as well obviously because everyone’s having the same idea, as prices are skyrocketing at the moment.”

It’s well known that British farmers grow rapeseed. However, there won’t be enough to fill the gap.

“Prices for rapeseed oil have risen 50-70 per cent since the attack,” said president of the National Edible Oil Distributors’ Association, Gary Lewis. “But there’s a limited supply to cover all this demand so some shortfall will be expected.”

Emily Miles, chief executive at the Food Standards Agency, said allergic reactions to rapeseed oil were “very rare and if they do occur are mild”, and advised anyone with allergies to look out for extra information.

.

By admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.