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Fruitful! Issue One

W T HILL We are Family

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS




The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS

Thanks to our guest contributors in this issue

Packed with content created for the fresh and frozen produce sector


Andy Moylan Founder & MD of EFCIS

Louise Garden Co-Founding Director

Laura Martin Senior Broker

Kovthaman Murugaratnam Frupro Founder

Ollie Morley-Fletcher Frupro Founder

Will Hill Frupro Founder

Andrew Forsey Feeding Britain

Dee Blick No1 Best selling Marketing Author

Damian Weedon CEO W T Hill

Fruitful! - Issue One




warm welcome to Fruitful! our first glossy magazine for businesses in the fresh and frozen produce sector. In this issue we bring you a smorgasbord of interesting, engaging and useful content, from international bestselling author Dee Blick’s marketing on a shoestring tips to a special interview with Will, Kov and Ollie the founders of FruPro. We also shine the spotlight on WT Hill & Sons a name many of our readers will be familiar with. There is more, much more in fact! Andy Moylan, the founder of EFCIS talks about the brand-new Trade Credit Insurance policy EFCIS has launched with insurer COFACE solely for the fresh and frozen produce sector – find out why your sector needs a bespoke policy. We talk to Andrew Forsey of Feeding Britain, launch our business support club Ready Steady Grow (which is free to join with a whole raft of business and marketing support on offer). And Laura and Louise, two members of the EFCIS team share invaluable advice. Creating this magazine has given us the opportunity to meet many business owners in this vibrant and thriving sector. One thing is for sure, the food and drink sector has more than its fair share of tenacious, creative, and hardworking people: often family businesses spanning several generations, steeped in a rich and impressive history. The pandemic has hit hard but thankfully we now see the shoots of recovery with customers returning and a general sense of optimism prevailing. But no person is an island so make sure you take advantage of the support EFCIS is offering. I hope you enjoy reading Fruitful! If you have any questions or comments please get in touch and let me know what you would like to see in the next issue.

Putting families first with free fresh food

06 Louise Garden

Trade Credit Insurance

08 Dee Blick

Marketing on a Shoestring

10 Max Credit

Two superb tools for your business toolkit

12 Andy Moylan

A Man with a Mission


Harvesting a Pioneering Digital Ecosystem

16 Laura Martin

An Inspiring Trade Credit Insurance Broker

18 FPC

Fresh Produce Consortium

19 WT Hill & Sons

An amazing fifth generation family business


Increase in Fraud What Can I Do?

22 GET up and grow

Ready Steady Grow!

Jessica Moylan, Editor Email Tel: 01279 437662 The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


Putting families first with free fresh food An interview with Andrew Forsey Feeding Britain When was Feeding Britain established and why?

Last year, we supported 47,000 families


Feeding Britain was established in 2015 by a cross-party group of MPs and Peers who were alarmed by the rising numbers of people in our country who were hungry – unable to afford or access the food they needed for a basic meal. The group tasked Feeding Britain with setting up and supporting anti-hunger projects, and then acting on the lessons from these projects on the underlying drivers of need. And the team behind it? We have a small but dedicated team who drive the implementation of projects through our 30 regional partnerships and 500 frontline groups within the Feeding Britain network, and who liaise with decisionmakers in government to develop workable policies that address the underlying drivers of need. Over the past three years alone, those policies have resulted in changes worth more than £2.5 billion to programmes around employment, Universal Credit, and child hunger.

Fruitful! - Issue One

How widespread is your support? Every day we look to identify, nurture, and accelerate innovative means of preventing and relieving hunger in the communities we serve. Our network encompasses Ashfield, Barnsley, Bath and North East Somerset, Birkenhead, Bradford and Keighley, Bristol, Buckinghamshire, Cheshire West and Chester, Cornwall, Coventry and Warwickshire, Derbyshire, Devon, Gainsborough, Glasgow, Greenwich, Halton, Hastings, Leicester, Liverpool, Mansfield, Merthyr Tydfil, Newark and Sherwood, Newham, Norfolk and Suffolk, Sheppey, South Shields, St Helens, Wandsworth, West Yorkshire (Leeds, Calderdale, Kirklees, Wakefield), and Weymouth. With most of our work taking place in areas of high deprivation, anyone living within that neighbourhood is generally able to access these services. However, in some cases our partners apply an income- or postcodebased threshold or take referrals from other agencies working with people in need.

How do you distribute the food bags? While much of our work has traditionally taken place in churches, schools, children’s centres, high-street retail units, and community centres, we are increasingly adopting mobile solutions to help get fresh affordable produce to where it is needed most. So, we are converting double-deckers and other vehicles into ‘Community Food Buses’ and ‘Mobile Pantries’, while also deploying electric cargo bikes loaded up with fruit and vegetables. Can you share one of your initiatives? We believe that everyone in our society – from the private, voluntary, and public sectors – has a role to play in eliminating hunger and its underlying causes from the UK. One example of this model is our longstanding Healthy Holidays programme of food and fun for children outside term time (when free school meals aren’t available). Among its outcomes are a strengthening of bonds both within and between families, better dietary intake, lower levels of anxiety and financial concern among families, and improved preparedness among children for their

return to school. We proposed to the government that it should both fund and scale up this programme across the whole country. Having gained such a commitment, we then worked with them to design what is now known as the Holiday Activities and Food scheme, with businesses up and down the country playing their part in supporting it. How many families benefit from your support?

Last year, we supported 47,000 families in term time and 40,000 during school holidays with a collective total of 2.2 million meals’ worth of food. Beyond the staple fresh fruit and vegetables, we receive the odd glut of rhubarb, butternut squash, and celeriac! How can our readers help you?

We proposed to the government that it should both fund and scale up this programme across the whole country.

Supplies of food, financial contributions, and boots on the ground are the three key ingredients that make our projects work effectively. Any support whatsoever would make a huge difference and be gratefully received.

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


Trade Credit Insurance

An Investment or a Cost for Multinationals? By Louise Garden, Founding Director at EFCIS

Trade Credit Insurance can be a key tool in helping your business to grow.


As the global economy recovers, international trade will represent an opportunity for growth but with increased risk. The latter being attributed to the anticipated post pandemic growth in the number of insolvencies worldwide. So, if you are to benefit from your share of this growth how can we help you as time served, tenacious and experienced Trade Credit Insurance specialists -so that reward triumphs over risk? In this article we touch on how companies can leverage the benefits of their Trade Credit Insurance protection beyond increased payment certainty. I say ‘touch on’ because naturally there is only so much that can be shared within the confines of a few pages! So please do not hesitate to contact me or indeed any member of the EFCIS team if you are now reviewing your business strategy and your current Trade Credit Insurance arrangements. Or you would just like to chat with an experienced broker with significant business experience working with multinationals. There seems to be much talk currently

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about the cost of a Trade Credit Insurance policy being justified when it is set against the potential claims. We have a different view because Trade Credit Insurance can be a key tool in helping your business to grow as well as reducing risk! Let’s look at the importance of flexibility and the underlying role of your policy. It should be considered an investment to increase growth, profit, and shareholder value. When viewed in this light, Trade Credit Insurance takes on a whole new meaning. It opens a world beyond policy documents and ticking boxes. Increasingly multinational companies are looking to their broker for insights that are innovative and that challenge the straitjacket of accepted norms. For example, why should a multinational only insure their business with one underwriter? Could a syndicated managed policy be the solution? Working for our clients, we ensure that the level of cover we secure, and the premium, is aligned to the appetite of the risk underwriter. This results in maximum cover at no additional premium. With our Analysis

markets where it can be difficult to obtain a meaningful and up to date status report, why not outsource this to the Underwriters? It is estimated that 80% of global GDP growth in the next 20 years will come from emerging markets. Having access to the right information will be crucial if multinationals are to really take advantage of these markets. At EFCIS we know from decades of experience working with multinational brands that Trade Credit Insurance is a hugely beneficial business tool. It not only provides comfort to increase global sales it delivers a clear return on investment. Rather than being a cost it is just that – an investment.

of Risk & Compliance online report (ARC) monitoring this is a relatively straightforward exercise. We track the syndicated limits and performance of the underwriter to tailor policies to suit the individual client. Again, working closely with our multinational clients, we often see trading with strategic accounts which from time to time may require joint and several group limits. Transparency of policy performance is key. ARC allows the group head company increased insight into the co-insured subsidiaries and it monitors exposure across group policies. This can include claims, premiums, and overtrading - thereby providing greater transparency. A growing number of multinationals are going down the cross-border receivable finance route with their Trade Credit Insurance policy providing robust protection for the Bank. And with multinational companies trading in certain

It opens a world beyond policy documents and ticking boxes.

Louise Garden Founding Director Tel: 01279 437662 Mob: 07736 805586 Email:

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS

Marketing on a Shoestring. Going for Growth!


arketing is not about spending money on random activities in the hope you’ll find a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It’s about who you want to target – prospects, customers and lapsed customers and then developing simple communication campaigns with the job of motivating them to respond. You don’t want to target the world - just those businesses that will benefit from your wares and your fantastic customer service. And where you can profit from your passion too. You’re not a charity which is something I remind my SME clients of regularly!


So how do you start on your marketing on a shoestring journey?

for your small business Dee is a great source of advice that no small business should be without. Her writing is always clear, down to earth and inspirational. — Lisa Buckingham OBE, Financial Mail on Sunday —

Bestselling author of The Ultimate Small Business Marketing Book


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Start with a pen and pad (or your laptop). I tend to use flip charts for this exercise with my clients. Make two lists: “cold prospects” and “existing customers” and then create smaller subgroups if relevant (i.e. VIP customers, lapsed customers) and likewise the importance you attach to prospects and the sectors they hail from plus their size. You must know who you’re targeting and why if you’re to use your time wisely. Don’t lump your targets into one big group if you need smaller groups to apply tailored messages to. Then consider... 1.

What will influence these cold prospects to use you? Now more than ever, people are looking for genuine value, decent payment terms and the reassurance that you provide quality consistently. Make a list of all the needs you meet starting with the most important. Include sector specific messages that build your case as a desirable brand - with each sector. Can you whittle down to the six most important needs and beside each need how you meet it? This content is your stock in trade when you start marketing to cold prospects. You’re talking their language and demonstrating why they should choose you!

2. The need to build loyalty with new and existing customers. What are the welcome back messages you think will woo back lapsed customers, make existing customers buy more and new ones come on board? I see so many businesses knee jerk into offering a price reduction when it’s not always needed. It’s always good to remind customers of what you can offer them, any new products, or services you have added (that they may be unaware of) and why you are their best bet! It’s good to reconnect with customers that fell by the wayside during the pandemic because reminding them of what you can do could be all it takes to start the ball rolling again. 3. Look at the options for communicating with these groups. I’m a big advocate of good old-fashioned pen and paper when it comes to the WOW factor. Sending a personal letter, hand signed enclosed in a handwritten envelope will ensure your message is read and reflected on. What to say? Revisit the messages you have created above and add a charming introduction. You are writing to say hello and catch up with your customer or are introducing yourself to a prospect because you know that what you offer will be of genuine interest to them. Email may be more efficient so don’t dismiss it but when you’re aiming for real impact, it can’t compete with a personal letter that has a genuinely interesting message. I can share many case studies of clients who ventured into paper, pen, and stamp (with some resistance I must confess!) and as a result signed up new customers and had healthy sales from many lapsed customers, they had all but given up on. Sending a nice letter and then picking up the phone a few days after it has landed is a good marketing strategy.

You must know who you’re targeting and why if you’re to use your time wisely. 4. Stop spending money on ‘stuff’ that’s not working. Have you had business from that magazine or website you were talked into using? Do you need to be more targeted and ensure that the channels you choose do reach your audiences and that you’re given enough space to share your captivating messages? 5. Review your marketing activities monthly. What’s working, what’s not? What needs tightening up? A regular marketing stock take will help you to focus on planning marketing campaigns with a realistic chance of succeeding. 6. Acknowledge that you must play a part in the marketing process. Don’t expect your apprentice, your son, daughter, your other half to have all the answers. Marketing on a shoestring is a team effort.

About the author Dee Blick Dee is a Fellow of The Chartered Institute of Marketing and a genuine Number 1 bestselling marketing author, regarded as one of the most respected and influential SME marketers in the UK. She’s the author of 4 bestsellers including: The 15 Essential Marketing Masterclasses for Your Small Business and The Ultimate Small Business Marketing Book. A sales’ driven marketer with 37 years’ experience, Dee has generated £12million+ sales (primarily from print based direct mail, PR, advertising, and marketing planning). She’s renowned for her down to earth approach to marketing on a shoestring for SMEs.

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


Two superb tools for your business toolkit. From EFCIS.

MaxCredit… briefly

This can result in an increase in available credit limits.


“As the economy recovers there will be a need to extend increased credit to your customers and for your business to purchase more goods or services from suppliers. If the level of recommended credit limit indication by a company information provider or Underwriters is insufficient you may have to pay in full or in part before receiving goods. You may have to ask customers to pay in advance - or even reduce the credit terms you offer. Paying a supplier in advance or on reduced credit terms has a negative impact on your available working capital and may require the need to raise working capital if it is indeed available (various invoice funding solutions). And for your customers, it may lead to some migrating to a competitor willing to offer credit. Securing a positive rating and credit line on your business and your customers provides a platform for growth and is less costly than utilising funding.” Andy Moylan, EFCIS

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Briefly how MaxCredit works… 1.

We secure up to date financial and non-financial information on your business, working with you to establish the market’s current risk view on your business and your customers’ (UK and overseas suppliers).

2. We agree on the information required and from whom to increase the likelihood of a positive improvement in both the grade and credit limit/recommend contract value. 3. This can result in an increase in available credit limits. 4. Once we establish the latest grades and credit limits, we put monitoring in place so that any future changes in the grades or credit limits from any of the key providers is well managed. 5. We helped clients by securing millions of increases in credit limits together with an improvement in their company and customer grades and limits.

It’s a wise investment for your business with payment only on results Please get in touch to find out more. An initial meeting can be online, by phone or face to face at a time that suits you.

Key benefits of Debtor Score Cards... 1.

A Debtor Risk Score Card quantifies the probability of an outstanding balance being recovered. It statistically estimates a debtor’s willingness to pay you plus their ability to pay and when they are likely to pay.

2. Increased sales opportunities are just one of the many benefits. Competitors relying on available filed information based upon old accounts will be reluctant to extend credit terms. 3. Debtor risk scoring will help your collections’ team identify those customers requiring less interaction, or contact, to prompt a payment and those for whom a more robust collections’ stance is required. It highlights debtors requiring further contact or support to bring their account up to date. 4. Profit margins are aligned to debtor risk. 5. It identifies the likelihood that customers may experience further financial difficulties in the future. You are prepared and proactive, not reacting. 6. Typically, write-offs are decreased with careful account management.

Debtor Risk Score Card…briefly “Relying solely on a debtor risk rating based on financial information that could be up to 18 months old or in certain markets, simply not available should be avoided whenever possible. But it’s what many businesses in the fresh and frozen produce sector are doing post pandemic. Don’t be one of them. Relying on incomplete or outdated information could lead to credit limits being offered to customers that should be paying up front or even limiting credit terms to customers that should be offered more. This is certainly the case following a challenging period of trading where sales and margins have been negatively impacted for many sectors. You need a Debtor Risk Score Card” Louise Garden, EFCIS.

Maximising the profit from your sales ledger.

To discuss how a made- to -measure for your business debtor risk score card could drive your sales and reduce debtor risk please contact us.

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


Andy Moylan – A Man with a Mission … to help businesses in the fresh and frozen produce sector grow without increasing risk.


lease read on and discover more about the brand-new Trade Credit Insurance Policy that we have developed solely for SMEs, startups, and multinationals in the fresh and frozen produce sector. Andy, what does this product do that any other Trade Credit Insurance Policy can’t do? It is a made to measure policy for this sector only. We developed it in partnership with Coface. So, it includes benefits you’re unlikely to find as standard in other policies. For example the option to include risk such as open price trading, delcredere and non-delcredere agent cover, cash against documents sales, dispute cover, flexible waiting period and supplier advance payment cover. We have spent months talking to businesses in this sector to arrive at a policy that addresses many of the risks they want covered. How do these differences benefit the businesses that take out the cover? With the economy now improving and the hospitality sector showing signs of bouncing back, businesses in the fresh and frozen produce sector will benefit with many increased sales’ opportunities. However, the risk of debtor insolvency will increase too. This policy provides the comfort and cover to trade with existing and new customers with increased


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certainty of future payment. The cover is anything but standard, including several features unique to the sector. And it could have a positive impact on working capital to fund future growth. Share the top 6 benefits? • • • • • •

Competitive policy premiums and fixed credit limit fees Dispute cover Flexible waiting period (optional) Supplier advance payment cover (optional) Open account Trading (optional) Low policy deductible of only £500.

Is there a certain size of business that will benefit? Any company within the fresh and frozen produce sector can benefit from this policy irrespective of the number of debtors. The policy is available to long standing companies – multinationals, SMEs, and to new start-ups. It is exclusive to EFCIS. It is a further example of our commitment and involvement in this sector. Can you share a client case study to illustrate the benefits of this policy? A fresh fruit and veg company trading for over 20 years has been successful in growing their business to over £10.5 million in annual sales. The business has grown to the size


where the volume of business was causing cash flow and supplier issues. We worked with the company to put in place this new policy which yielded the following benefits: •

Third party debtor risk opinions from Underwriters which provided increased comfort for our client to offer open account credit terms which in turn increased sales. Benefited from a dispute claim of £50,000 which their previous policy did not cover (most don’t) but this policy does. What a benefit! The policy was assigned to their receivable financiers which enabled

the raising of additional working capital to support sales’ growth. We improved their company rating by providing up to date management accounts to both Trade Credit Insurance Underwriters and Company Information Providers. This resulted in improved open account credit terms and credit lines with several key suppliers.

What a benefit!

This case study demonstrates that this policy was a key player in increasing our client’s customer base and making them more profit! And this is what good Trade Credit Insurance should be all about!

It’s time to trade!

At last! A Trade Credit Insurance Policy for businesses in the Fresh and Frozen produce sector. Brought to you by EFCIS.




30 days













CREDIT LIMIT FEES FOR CASES £10M TURNOVER OR LESS 50 for £1,280 100 for £1,980





To be discussed with Coface New Business Manager

To be priced in estimated turnover calculation

ADDITIONAL WORDINGS - * *To be applied where there is a justifiable need


Open price trading

3 months available at a 5% premium loading

Delcredere and Non-Delcredere Agent cover Cash against documents sales

It is a further example of our commitment & involvement in this sector

6 months available at a 10% premium loading

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS



Harvesting a Pioneering Digital Ecosystem We talk to the founders of FruPro and discover how they are transforming the fresh produce sector for the greater good.

Tell us about FruPro and a little about each one of you We came together with a shared mission to build the first digital ecosystem for the fresh produce industry in the UK. Each founder brings a unique set of experience, skills, and goals to FruPro, supporting the three pillars of our business, Transparency, Sustainability, and Empowerment. William Hill, CEO and Co-founder

Will Hill Frupro Founder

130 years and 5 generations of fresh produce excellence 14

Will is the CEO who has lived, breathed, and built success across his extensive experience in the fresh produce industry, for his entire life. His family has 130 years and 5 generations of fresh produce excellence, with Will himself founding their adjacent imports’ arm with offices across Europe which is another success story. Will is connected to every corner of the fresh produce supply chain, in the UK and overseas. He is committed to empowering the industry to succeed in a digital space, working with an industry board to build an innovative solution that will hand the keys of success to businesses across the UK.   Oliver Morley-Fletcher, COO and Co-founder  Ollie is the COO with a core of operations’ experience, previously specialising in transformation projects

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in the financial service sector. He holds a Masters in Management from Cass Business School and has consistently pushed his colleagues to make use of the latest innovations, working smarter to achieve their goals. He headed the Protiviti’s food pillar on their CSR committee and during that time ran the “I on Hunger” event, which partnered with the group Rise Against Hunger to pack 50,200 meals with the help of 300 volunteers. Ollie’s focus will be sustainability, linking the industry directly to charity partners.    Kovthaman Murugaratnam, CTO and Co-Founder  Kov is the CTO with a long history of creating digital platforms and solutions for companies ranging from Intel and Rolls Royce to Deloitte and GSK. His DPhil in Engineering from Oxford is a testament to his skills with tackling problems in creative and efficient ways. His expertise has been invaluable when building our product’s road to market and so he guides our focus on Transparency. Kov will be engaged with untangling traditional processes, bringing clarity on how businesses communicate, operate, and transact with one another.  What is the story behind FruPro?  Will’s vision of FruPro was to preserve the honesty, decency, and integrity

of the fresh produce supply chain for the generations to come. This digital ecosystem will bring the consumer fresher, better quality produce from a wider range of business from across the UK and the world.   Will trialled the concept in early 2020, when the lockdown hit, and was able to redistribute 251 pallets, 35,741 packages and 178,705 kgs of fresh produce through his network in a single weekend using a simple type form document. This produce, destined for waste, fed half a million people their 5 a day. It also generated £101,000 in revenue for our clients (Growers, Wholesalers, Non-Retail).   The industry headlines at the time? If FruPro achieved these results with a low tech unscalable product, what could they achieve with a high-tech scalable product?   Who benefits from FruPro?  The whole supply chain.  FruPro is working with an industry board to ensure that every stakeholder in the industry gets their say on their biggest pain points.    FruPro will enable businesses to expand their reach, giving users access to many new trading partners. The platform will allow users to interact with other businesses in brand new ways, extending their existing relationships.  FruPro will help businesses to become more efficient, removing the need for complex and expensive middlemen or service providers. The platform will create a vibrant marketplace of sellers and buyers with faster access to news, prices, and data. Users will also have tools to plug in existing software and automate processes across the board.  FruPro is also committed to expanding the role of charity in redistributing produce. This will go to some of the most vulnerable people in society; those who are food insecure. This amounts to millions of people UK wide who don’t know where their next meal is coming from. We will be working with a range of community and charity partners providing direct links to business. 

How does it work? FruPro aims to digitise the fresh produce sector by building a centralised platform to manage the supply chain - from farmer to retailer. The platform will enable the fresh produce industry to trade better with the supply chain from end- to- end in a compliant marketplace, with secure transactions, reducing risk and bad debt. The users will be able to market their products, organise logistics, use data to understand market trends and utilise technology to improve efficiency, reduce waste and increase redistribution.     What are your short term and  long-term goals for FruPro?  The short-term focus is on the UK  Non-Retail Sector. Further growth will come from expanding the proposition into the European market over the next 3 years by entering the big growing nations of the EU namely The Netherlands, Germany, Spain, and Portugal. Longterm, FruPro will be a global solution replicating the model in the UK in the respective markets we enter. 

Ollie Morley-Fletcher Frupro Founder

Pack 50,200 meals with the help of 300 volunteers

Are we likely to see you on Dragons Den in the future? We have a big announcement shortly, which hopefully will mean we won’t need to appear on Dragons Den. Although we would be keen to test ourselves against the dragons. 

Kovthaman Murugaratnam Frupro Founder

If you had to describe FruPro in just two sentences before a pitching panel….  FruPro is a B2B digital marketplace for the entire fresh produce supply chain. We are working, hand in hand with the industry, to preserve traditional values while developing innovative solutions, in creating the next step forward for everyone. 

A long history of creating digital platforms

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


An Inspiring Trade Credit Insurance Broker We catch up with Laura Martin, fresh and frozen produce specialist at EFCIS and discover what’s on her 5 a day list! Tell us about your experience in the fresh and frozen produce sector and what you do at EFCIS. I joined the EFCIS team back in May 2016 as their SME broker specialist, having spent 16 years working within one of the largest Credit Insurers globally here in the UK. Over several years I have worked with SME clients from many sectors including fresh produce which for me is where I can offer my ultimate support as a specialist broker.  With SMEs not always having the capacity to run a Credit Insurance policy, this is where I step in, effectively becoming an extension of their credit control team, helping to run their policy on a day-to-day basis. This frees up their time to concentrate on growing their business.

Some companies are essentially having to start all over again...

Your SME clients in this sector supply to the hospitality sector. What can they do to protect themselves from the risk of bad debt? At EFCIS we are continually expanding and evolving our tool kit for clients to ensure they are fully protected and have the necessary information to make the right business decisions, whilst growing their business. As you can see from the features in this magazine, these tools will highlight sales opportunities and provide risk insights on their customers which we believe is even more important as the UK economy recovers from the pandemic. Now more than ever it is important for businesses to begin analysing and assessing their risk and implementing changes to ensure their risk of bad debt is significantly reduced. There may be light at the end of the tunnel for the UK hospitality sector, but with the Furlough Scheme coming to an end in September, the Government Insurance Scheme finishing at the end of June and loans plus business rents to pay back we are yet to see the full fallout from the pandemic. What are the biggest challenges and the best opportunities facing your clients in this sector? How can you help them with both? Undoubtedly there is a high level of pressure on companies. As we come


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out of the pandemic companies are in the process of re-stocking and restaffing ahead of anticipating a spike in demand. Some companies are essentially having to start all over again, which will increase pressure on their funding which is already being stretched to full capacity. Focussing on sales opportunities is big for my clients now and thankfully we are already seeing a shift from supermarkets to the smaller players in the hospitality sector, which is great news! Yes, there will be hurdles as we move forward but with the rise in GDP growth there is much to be positive about; not least the extraordinary resilience shown by businesses in this sector for the last 15 months. EFCIS can help take the heat off an already challenging environment for our SME clients, with our products, our knowledge, and our passion to steer clients clear of bad debt.

Fruit or vegetables? Name your top five a day. These change on a weekly basis but as follows… 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Mushrooms   Leeks Melon Strawberries Artichokes

What do you most enjoy about your job? Being a passionate individual, I love seeing the hard work and dedication of my 4th generation SME clients. I love the part I play in helping their businesses to flourish, expand and evolve. This makes my job worthwhile, and it motivates me to deliver my best every day. Why have EFCIS launched a fraud forum for this sector? Over the last 4 years we have seen an increase in the frequency of fraudulent transactions within the fresh produce market. Unfortunately, these are transactions that are not covered within the scope of a Trade Credit Insurance policy. Running parallel to this we have also seen a rise in the level of sophistication employed by fraudsters. The fresh and fruit produce sector is ranked in the top 3 sectors for fraudulent transactions and these transactions are set to rise significantly post pandemic. So, our fraud forum is a complimentary service where we help our clients establish if an account or an individual transaction is likely to be fraudulent. On receipt of a suspected fraudulent notification, we conduct a proven fraud audit which includes third party validation with selective underwriters. It is our experience that this type of transaction usually entails approaches to various suppliers at the same time, at month end when credit control departments are busy and, the transactions fit a certain size and profile. Any obvious fraudulent companies are shared with our clients in this sector. By nipping any potentially fraudulent activity in the bud and revealing the fraudsters, we are protecting our clients’ money, their livelihood and ensuring they can get on with the important task of running their business.

You can contact Laura on 01279 437662

Special Focus:

Fresh Produce Consortium FPC is the UK’s fresh produce trade association.

Current membership stands at around 700 businesses...


Widely recognised as the voice of the uk industry FRESH PRODUCE CONSORTIUM (fpc) plays a unique and crucial role in creating opportunities and supporting the growth of its members’ businesses. Their extensive membership encompasses all aspects of both domestic and global supply chains of the fruit, vegetable and the flower industry. FPC is owned by its vast membership and works exclusively for them. Current membership stands at around 700 businesses – a number which grows year on year. Members include retailers, distributors, importers, wholesalers, processors, packers and food service. Associate members include freight handling, ports, embassies, laboratories, business solutions, lawyers, packaging, recruitment and the trade media. FPC works on behalf of members, to this end engaging with legislators and regulators to advise on and influence current industry affairs including Brexit. Most of the work of this admirable Consortium goes on behind the scenes. They are a powerful force for good in the fresh produce sector.

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FPC works with: Government bodies NGOs Trade associations Agencies Embassies Members

Daily News just one email away! FPC produces FreshtalkDaily - News features covering the latest fresh produce industry news including supply chain, supermarkets, logistics and more. You can subscribe to get it free in your inbox every day.

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WT Hill & Sons An amazing fifth generation family business Founded in 1918 with a family street stall WT Hill & Sons was born with an underlying passion to provide nothing but the best fresh produce to their local customers. Before this, (and of course where it really all began), the great great grandparents would pull up on a horse and cart selling fruit and vegetables to the local housewives of Northwest London.  Since these humble beginnings and now with decades of experience under their belt, this 5th generation family business is taking the fresh produce sector further into the modern world, with William Hill (Director) designing, developing, and implementing the Frupro app (check out the double page spread in Fruitful!) whilst still working closely with Damian Weedon (Director) on WT Hill Imports’ business. Let us not forget their Wholesale business too with Joe Hill (Director) and Ryan Bellchambers (Manager) moving the business from strength-to-strength year on year focussing on growing their client and supplier base. WT Hill key customers hail from the retail sector. If there is a silver lining to the pandemic, it is that the high-quality stall/shop holders

have excelled during this time due to households branching out and eschewing the supermarkets, often unable to meet their demand for high quality produce. By contrast the local greengrocer has been able to showcase their abundance of fresh produce at a more than fair price. Long may this success continue! The team understand the importance of marketing and the business is now developing a “Harrods” style of branding (especially on the wholesale side) – with the emphasis on providing nothing but the best produce available to their customers all year round, all wrapped up in striking imagery that conveys quality. So, in conclusion, what makes WT Hill & Sons stand out as an exemplar business in the 21st century? It must be that the young and ambitious team are fuelled by a passion to grow the sector (an industry renowned for being short on youth) bringing new, attractive, and innovative ways to trade. And in doing so they are taking it by storm. The baton has been passed down the generations and the team are committed to winning!

Nothing but the best produce...

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


Increase in Fraud What Can I Do?

Fraud is an unexpected business cost you can mitigate with good processes and knowledge of what to look out for. With a leading Underwriter noting a 730% increase in fraud in the last five years, it can no longer be ignored. Companies must become more diligent and proactive in avoiding the possibility of being defrauded, and less reactive. Trade Credit Insurance does not cover fraud as standard, vigilance in this area is imperative. We hope this article helps. Main Types of Fraud

All IT systems’ security can be breached.

Corporate Identity Fraud Fraudsters will target and impersonate a well-established legitimate company or business with good credit worthiness. They will obtain and use authentic company information such as email signatures, company letterheads, logos, branding and much more, which they have stolen from a business’s website. Fraudsters will provide contact details and delivery addresses to a rogue trading address or offer to pick up the goods themselves. Suppliers will then invoice the legitimate company only to be told that they did not place the order. New Company Fraud Newly-established limited companies as well as sole traders and partnerships are at a higher risk of this fraud. With limited


Fruitful! - Issue One

companies, the fraud is mainly committed before the annual return is filed and/or the financial accounts are due to be filed at Companies House. Another example is when a dormant company suddenly becomes active and multiple accounts or annual returns are being filed at once, as well as several changes in registered address. This type of fraud is typically found within small to medium businesses. Short Term Fraud Short Term Fraud usually happens over a very short period of time. Criminals do not try to establish any form of credit history, instead they target as many companies as possible, hoping to have a credit account granted. The type of products targeted are those that are not easily traceable and are easy to dispose of. Electrical goods, food, toys, tools, alcohol, textiles and fancy goods products are prime for these types of fraudsters. Cyber Fraud All IT systems’ security can be breached. Some fraudsters will go to extreme

Payment is not made and the buyer is uncontactable

Contact EFCIS for support Call: +44 (0)1279 437662 lengths. Fraudsters have been known to hack into email accounts and hijack a person’s email from a legitimate company to change payment details or delivery addresses. Beware of any changes by email, particularly last-minute changes or unusual requests. Long Term Fraud Criminals place lots of small orders with suppliers, paying upfront for goods or paying promptly to build creditworthiness. Once the fraudsters have won the trust of their suppliers, a credit account is created. A large or several large orders are then placed. Payment is not made and the buyer is uncontactable. Goods are rarely recovered and the fraudsters move onto their next victim. They will act as any normal ‘new business account’, they will complete credit application forms, they will provide requested paperwork and references. These Long Firm Fraud can be very sophisticated and hard to spot; they will have websites, company stamps and logos. It’s the little things you need to watch out for, which we we have detailed in the “Top tips” column.

Top Tips to Look Out For ? • • • • • •

Orders from unsolicited customers Late changes to delivery addresses Orders from newly-established Companies Orders from dormant Companies Recent increases in reports taken from status agents. Increased frequency of fraud at month-end when credit control departments are busy.

Do’s • Get a Credit Account Application Form (CAAF)completed. • Confirm delivery address if not registered office or main trading address. Check Google Maps, does it look like anappropriate delivery address? • Verify all information on the form, using status reports and Companies House. • Source telephone numbers and website details independently to ensure they match with the CAAF. • Take out trade references and verify referees. • Confirm abnormal requests with your regular contacts by phone. • Check and verify website. • Ring the number of the company on website to validate details. Don’ts • Change any delivery or payment details at short notice without checking with your usual contact by phone. • Accept any detrimental changes to the account without verifiable written instruction.

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS


Contact us today to find out more!

Ready Steady Grow! EFCIS have launched a business support club – Ready Steady Grow - exclusively for the fresh and frozen produce sector. If you would like to subscribe free of charge please use the contact details found on the opposite page. What you will find: The EFCIS Magazine – "Fruitful!" which is packed with content created for the fresh and frozen produce sector. You can receive a printed copy and be given access to an online copy. Monthly Competitions Free one- to- one 30-minute phone or zoom sessions with Andy, Laura & Louise. Use this session as an opportunity to tackle any business problem or challenge you have; to discuss your plans for growth or to find out more about EFCIS services. These sessions are designed to help you not to sell to you! Monthly podcasts on relevant topics Monthly 3-minute videos from:

Andy Moylan FCICM Louise Garden Bsc Hons Founder & MD of EFCIS with Co-Founding Director decades of experience Louise was instrumental in helping businesses in this setting up EFCIS in 2000 sector to grow in good and is responsible for times and tough times and servicing clients, supported overcome the biggest by an able team of specialist barriers to success. Brokers. Louise has built a reputation for being a powerhouse of knowledge.

Laura Martin Senior Broker at EFCIS specialising in the SME sector, providing a hands-on approach by becoming an extension to her clients' credit control team whilst negotiating the best deals/limits under their Trade Credit Insurance policy.

Dee Blick FCIM UK’s No1 bestselling SME marketing on a shoestring author sharing top marketing tips for the fresh and frozen produce sector (on a shoestring of course!)

You will also receive a top tips summary from each video and will have access to the presenters so you can ask questions direct.

“Talk to our team with decades of experience in the fresh produce sector.” EFCIS. Always on your side helping you to grow a profitable business.

Call: +44 (0)1279 437662 email:


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Fruitful! Issue One  

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS.

Fruitful! Issue One  

The magazine for the fresh and frozen produce sector from EFCIS.

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