Credit crunch concerns

A survey by Troy-based Clear Seas Research on October 13th, indicated food industry insiders expressed concern over the impact of the current credit crisis -- both on their companies and on the food/beverage industry as a whole. While some believe the credit crisis will have "very little" or "no impact," most (74 percent) anticipate "moderate" to "great impact" on their company's business/operations.

On a macro-level, most (82 percent) believe that the current economy will have a "direct impact on the overall food and beverage industry." At the individual company level, insiders express concern with liquidity (daily working capital) and their company's ability to make purchases, and 73 percent anticipate increased/further industry consolidation in response to current economic times.

Insiders expect the "foodservice" segment to be most negatively impacted by current economic conditions, while "meat/poultry/seafood" and "retail" also are expected to struggle.