Why You Need To Shop Early For Party Platters this Christmas
"Christmas is coming and the goose is getting fatter..So cook him up, slice the meat and stick it on a (Caterline) platter!"
After the disappointment of the last two Covid Christmas experiences it does seem that (barring any last minute Government U turn) Santa will be able to do his rounds this year and Chritmas parties are once again back on the agenda.
After the lockdowns restricted seasonal celebrations it seems that the people of Britain are eager to make up for lost time and celebrate their freedom and the increased attendances at last weekends firework and bonfire displays shows that there is an enhanced sense of excitement for this years festivities.
Here's why I believe we all need to be prepared for a challenging Christmas this year...
1. SEASONAL INCREASES IN DEMAND
Here at Caterline we have already started to see significant increases in demand for our buffet platters and it is clear that the party season has started early and distributors and users of our catering disposables range are increasing their orders.
In spite of restaurants and hospitality venues reopening it is also clear that a growing number of artisans and caterers have decided to focus on the demand for take-out dining experiences that sprung up as people were forced to dine at home during Covid. This has created a lot of new potential markets for our catering trays and lids as people look for eye-catching ways to promote and protect their food.
While the Caterline platter range is conventionally used for salads and sandwiches at buffets, parties, weddings and events they are also being used more by home bakers, patisseries and chocolatiers to display mouth watering sweets, delicacies and cakes.
2. LEAD TIME FOR RAW MATERIALS
As you may be aware, the transport sector has been severely impacted by the lack of drivers and this is resulting in longer lead times for delivery of raw materials. This is exacerbated by reduced availability of shipping containers and border delays due to the volume of documentation required following BREXIT and the gradually increases in seasonal demand as Christmas approaches.
As the manufacturer of the recyclable plastic buffet platters we are of course able to increase our production hours to cope with seasonal fluctuations in demand but there are still a lot of uncertainties surrounding deliveries of the materials we require which means lead times can not be guaranteed.
3. CUSTOMERS ORDERING 'JUST IN TIME'
Understandably following 18 months of reduced sales during Covid, the hospitality sector has suffered more than most and cash reserves have been diminished. As a consequence a lot of our larger customers are not carrying as much stock as they used to and are placing orders as they need them. This in turn makes it difficult for us to plan our production runs and raw material requirements which can delay some orders as we are forced to change the jobs more frequently on our machines which increases downtime.
4. FURTHER POTENTIAL PRICE INCREASES
The ensuing chaos as the world recovers from the recent economical challenges has already resulted in unprecedented hikes in manufacturing costs. Energy prices have risen by circa 20%, container and shipping costs have quadrupled and of course raw material prices have been subject to regular increases with little or no notice.
While we are hoping that our prices can be maintained between now and the end of the year, there are no guarantees from suppliers that their costs wont continue to rise and given the volatility of the market we have to warn our customers to further increases.
5. THE CATERLINE GUARANTEE
Whatever short and long term challenges await us, you can be sure that Caterline will continue to manufacture and deliver our products as quickly and competitively as possible. Our team of dedicated staff will work around the clock if necessary and we will do whatever we can to ensure we manufacture and replenish our stocks so that you can purchase what you want,when you need it.
All we ask is that wherever possible, to avoid disappointment you place your orders early and try to order a bit more stock than usual and help ease the pressure during the extremely busy and diffcult Christmas period
- Gary Briscoe