Do you remember the salt shortage caused by striking Siberian salt miners in the 1960s? Ok – so it was probably a bit before your time, but I do remember it, even if I can’t find anything on the internet to back me up.
What the papers didn’t say was that even if there was a strike – and this was by no means certain, it didn’t matter because all the salt in the UK came from Cheshire where there was plenty of salt and no strike. It was what you might call “fake news”.
So why was there a shortage? Quite simply, people believed the warnings, started buying up salt and created a shortage.
Will there will be shortages in the period immediately following Brexit next year? Very probably, because just like the Siberian salt mines, it will be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
“But” – I hear you cry – “surely the Government is making contingency plans?” Of course it is.
Just like it made contingency plans for major disruptions caused by the Millennium Bug in 2000*, but seemed to have mislaid them a few months later when lorry drivers struck, disrupting the “just in time” delivery system.
Just like it had contingency plans in place in case of a “Leave” victory in the EU Referendum. Not.
So I’m stocking up. Call it managing the risk.
*The reason that the Millennium Bug didn’t strike is because thousands of people ran tests and trawled through millions of lines of code to make sure that it didn’t, not because it was fake news. Just saying.