Friday, 11 January 2019

A busy start to the year

It’s obviously taking me longer to get back into the swing of things, as after my first full week back at work, I’m feeling absolutely cream-crackered. I hit the ground running through, as it was straight back into a “full-on” manic week of mayhem, and with an order book which is absolutely bursting at the seams, it is definitely been a case of “all hands to the pump”.

We had wondered as to why, even at Christmas time, (a traditionally slack time of year), we’d been swamped with orders, but the truth slowly dawned that many of our customers were preparing for that worst case scenario, of the UK crashing out of the European Union on 29th March, without a deal – the so-called “No deal Brexit”.

My company manufactures dental products; primarily dental cements, restoratives (filling materials), etching agents, glazes and dental polishing pastes - otherwise known as “Prophylaxis Pastes”. The latter are a form of toothpaste, but with much more abrasive properties. This comes from the pumice used in their formulation.

We have informed our customers that whatever happens, we don’t foresee much in the way of supply problems. Our cement and restorative products, are based on finely powdered glass. We don’t handle amalgam-type filling materials, which are mercury based. They are far from being environmentally friendly and may have long-term toxic effects on patients, but those of us of a certain age, probably have a mouthful of such fillings.

What I was leading up to is that our special dental glass is produced in the UK, and the same applies to most of our containers and packaging materials. Despite this, some of our largest customers are playing it safe and are stockpiling. They could get caught out though, as many of our products have a finite shelf-life, so we will have to see.

I wasn’t actually intending to write this much about my workplace, as I really just wanted to say that after such a manic first week, my mind isn’t working as creatively, as it might do normally, and with little to report on the local beer front, there’s not much beer or pub-wise that I can write about. I was that lacking in inspiration earlier, that I dozed off in front of my computer screen – talk about a light-weight!

January is traditionally a quiet month in the licensed trade, but there are several things coming into view towards the end of the month. For the moment though, I’ll just crack open one of my few remaining cans of St Austell Proper Job, before turning in for an early night!


Martin Taylor said...

So is the Bangles reference "Manic Monday", Paul ?

Paul Bailey said...

It certainly is, Martin. People go into panic mode when the order book is as full as it is at the moment, and my department feels the pinch at both ends.

Fortunately I've learned over the years how to dissolve stress, so apart from the tiredness, which is symptomatic of this time of year, I am okay.

Those lunchtime walks also help and I'm off on a ramble this morning, with a group of friends. Naturally we will be stopping off at a nice country pub - full details to follow in due course.