Food & Drink

Sector Overview – Food & Drink

Within the latest HMRC statistics on R&D tax credits, we can see that only 0.5% of all claims made under the SME scheme, were for companies operating in the Accomodation and Food sector.
The average claim value was £23,809.

Scientific and Technological uncertainty within Food and Drink development

When creating new recipes for food and drink products, producers will know just how much development is required, before they’re ready for consumers. A great deal of R&D take place, with the development process being both time consuming and full of uncertainty. Failure rates are high, however, to offer customers what they desire within this fast-moving industry, R&D is an essential part of day to day business. Eligibility for Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credits centres around the two key areas, of either:

Producing new or improved products.

The design and development of a product, involving some degree of uncertainty for which the answers were not obvious.

Examples of some of the scientific and technological uncertainties while developing Food & Drink products

Development of processes
The food and drinks industry is shrouded in secrecy, with each company having their own recipes for products. For a company to make a product, they must develop their own unique process. As a result, the formulas are constantly evolving before a settling upon a final recipe.
Formulation to meet regulations and guidelines
It’s not uncommon for new regulations to come into force, resulting in the need to reformulate a recipe, for example the recently implemented “sugar tax”. It’s this changing of quantities and ingredients, that cause some degree of uncertainty. Because of this, a great deal of R&D in needed to recreate the product.
Scaling production from small batches to industrial production methods
Even when something may seem very simple at the start, projects can still need a great deal of work. Scaling recipes sizes can often cause significant technological uncertainty. For example, when scaling an original recipe there could be certain ingredients that may overpower others when used in larger amounts.
Following the development of the product itself, it’s vital to be able to ensure that this reaches the consumer in the desired state, while at the same time maintaining freshness and flavour. This can require certain packaging to be developed. Getting to this stage requires a great deal of trail and experimentation, resulting in much uncertainty.

It’s been a very swift and easy process.

Stefan Cosser, F&C Food Limited

Fantastic result for our company, cash back for our R&D and very little of our time spent getting it back. Fiscale did 99% of the work and we collected. It made what seemed on the outset a complex proposal very easy to understand and to complete.

Adrian Turner, Yum Yum Tree Fudge

Fiscale have been brilliant at helping our business gain the support we really needed. They made it easy to understand a complex process and were efficient and getting things done.

Aneesh Popat, The Chocolatier

Great service from a professional and experienced team.

Claire Neill, Radiance Cleanse