Geoffrey’s of London, thought to have been the largest independently owned UK food shop in France, has closed, a casualty of Brexit.
It closed its doors before Christmas, as well as its wholesale side, and a dozen staff are looking for work.
Selling British food for 30 years
The shop opened in 1991 after owner Geoffrey Garnett spotted a business opportunity while holidaying in Antibes.
It served expatriates, yacht-owners and workers and French people who enjoy UK foods.
Complications after Brexit
Director Chris Brand, pictured, said: “It was due to Brexit-related complications: increased paperwork, suppliers who weren’t set up to deal with the formalities, vets’ certificates for fresh products… It’s worth it for a full pallet of bacon or sausages, but not mixed pallets.
“UK prices were also going sky high and we had staff issues.
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British leaving the area
“Things had been running smoothly until Brexit kicked in. We kept it up as long as we could, including 20 years for our wholesale warehouse, which I set up with Geoffrey and his wife.”
He added that some British residents or second-home owners had left Antibes and the cost-of-living rises had also not helped as their products were not seen as ‘essentials’.
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