Become a Member of AIMS

It would be an understatement to say that the last few months have not been the most challenging for the country. 

 

This is why we believe now is absolutely the time for your business to join the Association of Independent Meat Suppliers.

 

Our members include:

 

  • Abattoirs

  • Licensed Cutting Plants

  • Meat Processors

  • Meat Wholesalers

  • Retail Butchers

  • Catering Butchers

 

And we also have an increasing number of AIMS Approved Supply Partners covering:

 

  • Solicitors

  • Equipment Manufacturers

  • Auditing businesses

  • Accountants

  • Business consultancy services

  • Suppliers of equipment and consumables

  • Staffing agencies and recruitment specialists.

 

Since mid-March we have updated every one of our members every weekday and sometimes at weekend with information to help their businesses run as smoothly as possible. We know that this has been appreciated by members as we have received so many positive messages and posts on social media in response to our work. These are just 3 from dozens of messages received in the last few weeks.

 

“Brilliant, well worth the annual subscription”

 

“Great service from all of the AIMS team to provide me with information quickly on social distancing”

 

“Keep up the good work. What you send us is so useful”

 

So why are we getting these plaudits? Well….

 

  • Flexible Furlough – AIMS lobbied for many weeks for flexible furlough to be introduced. We wrote to the Chancellor (he replied) and supported members in writing to their local MPs and we produced some case studies on how flexible furlough would benefit members. When Mr Sunak announced that Flexible Furlough would be introduced from August, we again wrote to him making a strong business and economic case for an earlier introduction. He agreed with our viewpoint and brough the implementation for flexible furlough forward by one month to the start of July.

 

  • Trade Credit Insurance – A member asked if we would assist when they were refused credit insurance. A quick ring round of other members quickly shows us that this was an emerging problem. AIMS wrote to the Chancellor, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and the Financial Conduct Authority asking that they look at this matter and to challenge, where necessary, the insurance industry. We helped members write letters to their MPs and where the member was in Wales, their Assembly Member. The result, trade credit insurance is now available, backed by government guarantee and members are now able to insure debt.

 

  • Business Rates – Several members have felt that the grants that have been offered to some businesses have not benefited them. In another case, a site had been revalued just ahead of the Covid-19 pandemic taking them just beyond the threshold for assistance. AIMS wrote to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and also have helped members write to their MPs. AIMS have written on behalf of members to their MPs and where necessary to Local Authorities and elected officials. In some cases, we have been successful, and members have received the payments they felt they were due. In others, we are still pushing the member’s case.

 

  • Business Interruption Insurance – Catering Butcher members have suffered a loss in gross profit as result of their customers being forced to close due to Coronavirus. It was clear to AIMS from the outset that enforced closure due to a notifiable disease (Covid-19 along with SARS became a notifiable disease in the UK 5th March 2020) and that this, to our minds, was clear business interruption. We made the case for business interruption policies to be settled with the Chancellor and the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Local Government and finally to the Financial Conduct Authority. We knew that we were not alone and raised the issue with other trade bodies. As a result of this effort, the FCA announced that they would place before the courts a case seeking legal clarity in respect to business interruption policies and settlements. AIMS have met with (via Conference call) the City legal firm, Herbert Smith Freehills, and have put forward the position of members. AIMS have also made a written submission to the FCA and this will form part of the evidence that will be heard by the courts towards the end of July.

 

  • Representation – Undoubtedly our work has come to the attention of the food industry. We have always represented members with DEFRA, the FSA and other regulatory bodies. But today, our members views and concerns are heard within the Food and Drink Federation CV-19 Roundtable meetings. We are on the daily Food and Drink Industry Working Group Call with DEFRA. We sit on the Welsh Government’s Agriculture Resilience Group and we now represent our members in a whole host of other forums.

 

  • Critical Worker Status in Scotland – At the start of the pandemic we learned that in Scotland, not all food processing staff would be classed as critical workers. Over a weekend we wrote to every MSP making the case that those in the meat processing industry were critical. A point which they accepted.

 

  • But our work for our members is continuous – 

 

  1. We are currently working to get Catering Butchers views on credit and service levels understood by the UK Hospitality industry.

  2. We have challenged the 20% Less Meat Campaign and are in on-going discussions with them to tone down their work and to recognise the positive benefits of red meat and dairy in the diet and their associated environmental benefits.

  3. We are preparing a submission on behalf of our members for the call for evidence in respect to shortage occupations within the forthcoming UK Points-Based Immigration System.

  4. We are speaking with the Home Secretary and Transport Secretary in regard to the quarantine measures to ensure that they eased in suspect to seasonal meat industry workers ahead of the run up to Christmas.

  5. We take up the concerns our members have on their behalf with Government or their local council.

  6. And we continue daily to answer members questions from childcare to self-employment benefit, from templated furlough letters to providing legal and technical advice from our retained team of industry specialists.

 

  • Also, in response to our catering butcher members we now publish a regular wholesale market price report

 

AIMS has always has a reputation for being no-nonsense and ‘robust’. We are, because if we won’t stand up for our members and their interests with a collective voice, we would be failing in our duty to them and the trust they have put in us.

 

AIMS offers its members 24/7 access to technical and legal support as well as advice on marketing, business development and green energy.

 

Please consider joining the 250+ meat processing businesses from abattoirs to catering butchers by contacting nbagley@aims2001.co.uk or calling the office on 01609 761547

Association of Independent Meat Suppliers 

PO Box 125

Northallerton

North Yorkshire DL6 2YG

Telephone: 01609 761547

Fax: 01609 761548

Email: nbagley@aims2001.co.uk

The Association of Independent Meat Suppliers is a company limited by Guarantee. Company Registration No. 04389636. VAT Registration No. 772 1907 22 Registered office address; 19 East Parade, Harrogate HG1 5LF

© 2020 by AIMS.