Developing workforce skills, fair employment regulations, and ensuring access to labour is key for the Food and Drink Industry.

The FDF can guide your company through policy areas from apprenticeships and T levels to national living wage and immigration.


Daily survey on labour shortages and the impact of Omicron

The FDF has been asked to support the Government in monitoring the ongoing labour shortages and the additional impact of the Omicron variant of Covid. The request from Government is for businesses to complete the survey on a daily basis.

The survey is very short and should take no more than 3 minutes to complete.

The aim of this survey is to collect up-to-date, accurate and representative data on the impact of workforce absences across key parts of the UK economy. 

The latest data suggests Omicron is extremely transmissible and is quickly becoming the dominant variant. Cases are now doubling every 2 to 3 days and for this reason the Government urgently need real-time (daily) data.

Your contributions to this survey are highly valued and will directly inform senior government officials and ministers. Due to the sensitivity of this data it will not be shared outside of the UK and Devolved Governments. 

Please contact Mark Corbett, Innovation, Employment and Skills Policy Manager if you have any questions about this request.

National Apprenticeship Week 2022

Apprenticeships and Qualifications

The theme for National Apprenticeships Week 2022 has been announced. Continuing on from 2021, ‘Build the Future’ will be this year’s theme with a focus on the benefits apprenticeships can have on individuals, businesses and local communities.

National Apprenticeship Week (NAW) will take place between 7 and 13 February 2022, and a toolkit is available to support the apprenticeship community with planning their activity for the week.

2022 will be the 15th iteration of NAW, a week-long celebration taking place across England to encourage individuals of all ages reach their career goals by building skills and knowledge through an apprenticeship.

Individuals, employers, training providers and communities are being asked to support NAW 2022 by encouraging everyone to consider how apprenticeships can #BuildTheFuture.

DEFRA Weekly Labour and HGV shortages survey

DEFRA’s weekly survey on labour and HGV shortages is available to complete at:

The survey takes less than five minutes to complete and is designed to ensure that DEFRA has up to date and accurate information on the state of the labour market in key sectors of the UK economy.

The deadline for completing this week’s survey is Thursday 2 December.

FDF Apprentice of the Year Award – Entries are now open!

Do you employ a brilliant apprentice in your food and drink manufacturing company?

Nominate them for the FDF Apprentice of the Year award before 28 February 2022. It’s completely free to enter!

View the full criteria

Find out more about the FDF Awards

DWP webinar on redundancy support

Redundancies are challenging for everyone involved.  Being made redundant or even being told it may happen, can be a very worrying time for both the Employer and Employees. 

The Department for Work and Pensions through Jobcentre Plus offers a fast and free ‘Rapid Response Service’ to help Employers and their employees through the process of redundancy.  The Rapid Response Service aims to support both workers facing redundancy and employers by offering early access to Jobcentre Plus services before workers lose their jobs.

On Thursday June 24th, DWP is hosting a free webinar for employers which will review the service and how it can support employees at risk of redundancy.  The session will include details on:

  • The Find a Job service, with access to thousands of vacancies
  • Tips and advice about moving to different sectors, CVs and interviews
  • Advice about which benefits and other support are available.

The webinar takes place on Thursday 24 June, 12:30-13:30. 

Sign for the free event


Related topics


Education and skills

The FDF is finding proactive solutions to develop a skills pipeline for our members. Through apprenticeships, T Levels and retraining we are building the tools needed to maintain a growing workforce.

eu settlement - passport

EU settlement scheme and immigration

The FDF is supporting our members to stay informed on the latest changes to the new UK immigration system. This includes guidance on EU Settled Status for employees.

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Inclusion and diversity

The FDF is working with members to improve the state of inclusion and diversity in the food and drink manufacturing sector.


National living wage

Maintaining a competitive employment offer and ensuring compliant practice is important for our members. The FDF will help you understand the current landscape and push for your concerns to be heard.

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National Food Strategy

We are working with members and key stakeholders to inform the upcoming National Food Strategy (NFS) for England. This includes engagement on the independent review led by Henry Dimbleby and the Government white paper.

occupational health and safety

Occupational health and safety

Keep up to date with the latest HSE insights and information to help keep your workforce safe and your workplace compliant.


EU exit

The FDF produces a range of resources to help guide companies through the complexities arising as the UK leaves the EU. This includes our Brexit Roadmap resource. The FDF also runs various Brexit-related committees.

Report: Establishing the labour availability issues of the UK Food and Drink Sector

27 August 2021

The FDF in partnership with the NFU and a number of other food chain organisations has published a new report on Establishing the labour availability issues of the UK Food and Drink Sector.

Read more

Report: Food and Drink Inclusion and Diversity Report 2021

21 July 2021

Embodying the principles of inclusion and diversity has shown to enhance a company’s reputation, increase its talent pool when recruiting and improve productivity, innovation and decision making.

Read more

Report: Feeding the Future: Working together to build the National Food Strategy

08 October 2021

The Food and Drink Sector Council offers food chain solutions as part of the industry’s contribution to the UK Government’s forthcoming National Food Strategy.

Read more