With the likelihood of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit increasing, global pharmaceutical companies, Novartis and Sanofi, and plane maker, Airbus, have followed the lead of Kings Langley MND patient, Andrew Knowlman, by building UK inventory, as you can read here .
Knowlman commented, ‘I rely on Ensure PEG feeds, syringes, pee bags, various medication, low-foam toothpaste, adult diapers and Gin & Tonic for visitors. Any risk to the supply of these items will be catastrophic. I’ve built a bunker in a nearby wood, which friends can access’, he went on to say.
He outlined the complex drone operation, which will see supplies being airlifted from a site near Bruges in Belgium. This will be flicked into operation when existing stocks run low. Think of the post-war airlift into West Berlin.
‘Even when a mission-critical item says ‘Made in England’ on the pack, you don’t know if some of the ingredients are from the other EU countries. We’ve successfully shipped two years’ worth of liquid feed up the Grand Union Canal on special barges to the storage facilities’. Mr Knowlman preferred not to discuss prescriptions and stuff like that.
‘We looked at the approach taken by Andrew Knowlman’, commented Novartis Chief Operating Officer, Harald Schmitz, ‘and we realised we needed to act quickly. We had assumed that there would be some trade arrangements, to enable free movement of goods’.
Mr Knowlman explained that Phase 3A of the Irish Sea Liquid Feed Pipeline, linking Abbott Healthcare’s Sligo manufacturing site with southwest Hertfordshire, was nearing completion. He refused to elaborate on the different stages, except to say, ‘It’s going to be huge, biggest ever, and the Irish are going to pay for it’.
Asked if he was perhaps being a little over-dramatic about ensuring his modest supply needs were met, he didn’t really have a credible answer.