Over the past 15 days I have not only been running my company as normal but I have been faced with largest threat to its future since it began in 1992. This is #Brexit & here is my thread on just how bad things are getting. 1/26
Six months ago my business started to prepare for Brexit. We obtained the following licences and accreditations JUST to maintain the status quo. EORI number, RORO badge for Chief, GBRC number, GBWK number, we already had ARWS and DAN accounts. 2/26
All of this took nearly five months a lot of form filling but on the 9th December this was all in place. So I would say whilst we knew Brexit would be a car crash we did not know it was going to be a multiple pile up in the fog with fatalities. 3/26
On January 4th I returned to work being wise enough to have stockpiled just enough so that if we had a bumpy ride in January we would have enough stock to last until February. 4/26
I should add this took a considerable amount of cash flow and management to do this during a lockdown/ pandemic combined with Xmas sales. But we managed. 5/26
I should add this took a considerable amount of cash flow and management to do this during a lockdown/ pandemic combined with Xmas sales. But we managed. 5/26
On my Return in January I started to use Chief for the very first time. It was not possible to use this system prior to Brexit or necessary as it was very simple to move stock in the EU with minimal fuss and delay with the EMCS system. 6/26
It’s fair to say it worked like clockwork after 40 years of tweaks to get the system just right. But in Brexit Britain we are very much on our own & so this British system (CHIEF) has now got every product the U.K. consumes in its grasp. 7/26
However the problem with CHIEF is that it was built decades ago and was never designed to handle EU imports too! Why would leave a system (EMCS) that works for one that does not? 8/26
A CHIEF declaration (C88) has up to 65 boxes to complete. Some of these are very simple like excise number and parties involved on the import. So basic stuff. Others however are very vague codes. 9/26
CHIEF is there for the Government to collect tax, that is its primary purpose. It’s not there to aid businesses. It definitely hinders business. On this point no debate is required. Most of the other boxes are codes that have zero meaning .10/26
Now unbeknown to me until January all hauliers use secondary software to over write onto CHIEF because is so hard to use. There is currently a 4 month waiting list for new installations of this software which costs Β£2K all in. 11/26
I have been imputing directly to CHIEF which I should add costs Β£157 per month to be able to access. Yes thats right folks you have to pay to tell the government how much your going to pay them. The first Brexit dividend. 12/26
Now after 14 days I finally complete my first C88 declaration but noticed I was paying the 3rd countries tariff. Odd I thought to myself I am sure just three weeks ago the U.K. signed an FTA with the EU to make all goods tariff free. So I used my contacts to find out more. 13/26
Now you would think that government would want to make using CHIEF as easy as possible as now there are millions of businesses having to use it. 14/26
So you would think that a call centre would be a good idea right? No wrong, this is the ONLY HMRC system where there is no number to call. Just an email with a 5 day turn around. Remember that when government say they are doing all they can to help. 15/26
So with the knowledge that government are not interested in making Brexit easy for businesses and in many cases businesses are just trying to survive, we have ploughed on regardless. 16/26
Again you would think if there is a FTA, CHIEF would apply it to all imports from that area/ country right? Wrong you have to claim it. Unbelievable! 17/26
Claiming a tariff free status was yesterday’s game with CHIEF. To be fair deep in the CHIEF files I found the notes to apply the codes to the system required (U 110 followed by AP for example) but problem is after triple checking, CHIEF has not been updated properly. 18/26
So once again I can’t import wine via my own means until I wait for CHIEF staff( normally five working days) for them to advise how to correct the problem and complete the declaration correctly tariff free. 19/26
So what does this all mean for the consumers? Well to supply the U.K. the exporter need to get a Rex document to prove the origin of their stock to the U.K. government (again, unbelievable). 20/26
Then with all the additional costs in Paperwork, time wasted, government fees to tell the government how much your paying them and delays in the supply chain it’s obvious price are upward bound. 21/26
So this is why I have been saying wine per bottle on retail will increase by at least Β£1 per bottle for mass market products, for niche small batch wines your looking at Β£1.50 or even Β£2.00 on the bottle prices. There’s another of those Brexit dividends. 22/26
This government have cocked up Brexit from day one. But I am now 100% sure that choice will reduce dramatically, price will increase dramatically, delays with increase dramatically and the U.K. wide depression is inevitable, and still the government couldn’t give a toss. 23/26
It’s why I will leave this country next year once my kids have finished there education. I am lucky and have a second nationality within the EU thanks to my father. 24/26
But for those that can’t leave I understand why you are angry and with what I can see your about have a lot more taken away from you than just freedom of movement. 25/26
The Tory party is no longer the Tory party. It is UKIP that has assumed control of the Tory party. They goal is clear, to commit economic vandalism and social vandalism on the U.K. whilst ensuring they get considerably wealthier. That is very sad for what was a great country. END
I would just like to say a massive thank-you for all the kind words following my thread. Over 1.2M people have read it so far. I just hope people now understand the pain all importers are dealing with. I hope it gets better but I have doubts. Keep safe.
Here is my interview on BBC Wales this evening. Second half on next tweet.
Part 2.
Part 2

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More from @DanielLambert29

11 Apr
I have been set a challenge by @richardsiddle to find any positives of Brexit and how it will be good for my industry. I am quite a positive guy so here is what I have come up with thus far.
So it’s true the grey market is dramatically reduced in the UK now and the direct to consumer mail order companies can’t bypass UK duties. So that is good. But it’s a tiny part of the UK wine industry.
Hmm starting to struggle now... if government did remove Vi-1 that would be a major boost to the trade and would make shipping interesting wines from non EU countries more viable. So that would be a Brexit bonus if Gove stopped being a numpty.
Read 4 tweets
10 Apr
Here we are on the other side of Easter and still those #teethingproblems are biting. Over the past 3 months, since my first thread, I have seen things that really are depressing. Here is my next short thread.
Having over 24M hits on my Twitter account has lead to me to talk with prominent politicians on the opposition benches. However I still haven’t had the conversation with @michaelgove that he promised.
So what’s new since my appearance on @newsnight and @mrjamesob? Simple put very little. Supply chains are still struggling to cope, cost of logistics continue to rise & still total silence from the Tory-UKIP party.
Read 14 tweets
6 Mar
We have now entered March on our #Brexit journey & as each day passes I get a clearer view of just how badly the Government have let down the U.K. with their shoddy little deal. In this thread I reveal all I have learnt in past couple of weeks. 1/23
The cost of importation of wine just keeps going up. I have now had to get another accreditation from the seven I already have, this time with Organic bodies as an Organic wine importer. This maintains status quo from 2020. 2/23
If you import any organic products inc wine from July 1st you must be registered. Your organic wines have to be stored separately and we are due to have an inspection to check our warehouse is real I guess. What a waste of time. 3/23
Read 23 tweets
13 Feb
It’s now February 13th, a full month since my 1st thread where I highlighted just how bad brexit was turning out to be for the wine industry. Let’s see if it really is #teethingproblems. 1/28
I have still got issues with the heavily increased cost of Freight & still stock is painfully slow to arrive as both customs agents & us struggle with paperwork. But we are told its #teethingproblems byΒ @BorisJohnson. I beg to differ . 2/28
#teethingproblems would be something you could iron out in a day or even a week, however Government is ignoring Importers & Exporters as they slowly strangle them so suit the true architects of this grand #Brexit plan of tax evasion. 3/28
Read 29 tweets
30 Jan
I am now at the end of January 2021 and still no new stock. I can see clearly what #Brexit really means for my industry & how I will have to fundamentally change my business model if I am to be trading in 12 months time. But the government wants more paperwork in five months.1/15
This week I have been kept busy by planning how to ship wine to minimise the substantial rising costs. Now I can see the full carnage of what this government has done to my industry and the wider economy. But still no apology from any government official. 2/15
My business was big on Groupage shipping which meant we could offer a very broad selection of mid ranged wines to our customers all over the U.K. . It is this ranging which makes us who we are and why we win all our trade awards. 3/15
Read 16 tweets
23 Jan
We are now 23 days into 2021, here is my second thread on how #brexit reality is holding my business back currently, as I watch the wine supply chain collapse before my very eyes. 1/22
Following on from my thread last week I was more than keen to resolve the issues I was having. With now famous #CHIEF computer declaration system, I again spent time checking the coding but sadly to no avail. 2/22
On Monday afternoon I was thrilled to receive a call from an extremely helpful HMRC senior officer from CDS/Chief team. She requested screen shots, which I supplied quickly, and she promised to reply as quickly as possible adding they were extremely busy with help enquiries. 3/22
Read 22 tweets

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