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Measuring and comparing economic resilience within the UK agri-food and drink industry

A study to provide evidence on how the agri-food and drink industry responds across the food chain to a broad set of economic risks and challenges.


The study aims to expand our understanding of the agri-food and drink sector. Its goal is to widen the scope of evidence on how the industry responds to a broad set of economic risks and challenges. How well the industry can respond to the disturbances (shocks) reflects how economically resilient it is.


The report is comprised of a literature review on the risks affecting the UK agri-food and drink sector and the methodologies used to develop measures of economic resilience. It then identifies estimates on the economic resilient of the subsector. The study derived two complementary measures:

  • how well each sub-sector can limit the size of any impact that a shock has
  •  how quickly each sub-sector is able to recover.


The study identified more resilient sub-sectors:

  • animal production
  • growing of crops
  • the food wholesale sector
  • processing and preserving of meat and production of meat products manufacture of other food products

These sub-sectors manage to dampen the initial impact of a common negative shock and to recover more quickly to pre-shock levels.

The study extensively tests the sensitivity of the results.