FDF responds to latest ONS labour figures

13 December 2022

Latest ONS labour data for food and drink manufacturers shows a slight drop in the number of people employed in the sector in Q3, with a total of 456,000 now working in the industry.


FDF Head of Industry Growth, Caroline Keohane said: "The ONS data released today represents a slight fall in the number of jobs in food and drink manufacturing dips which can often be attributed to manufacturers flexing their workforce as demand changes throughout the year.

"But the overall picture remains one of labour and skills shortages which are holding back growth within the sector, with our latest state of industry survey reporting a 9.1% vacancy rate across a number of roles. To address these shortages, we would ask the government to support businesses to invest in automation, urgently review and update the shortage occupation list at all skills levels, whilst also making the apprenticeships levy more flexible to help us to build a more secure pipeline of skills for the industry."