Global experts to target international markets in a bid to boost Scotland's food and drink exports

Key international markets are being targeted in a multimillion-pound drive to expand Scotland's food and drink sales.

Loading Comments
Richard Lochhead
Richard Lochhead

A team of "global experts" will be sent to seven main markets, covering North America, France, Japan, Germany, the Middle East, Hong Kong and south-east Asia.

Richard Lochhead, the cabinet secretary responsible for food and drink, said: "The sector has experienced tremendous growth in recent years. In fact, if the current rate of growth continues then we will have an export rate similar to that of the North Sea oil and gas industry. That is remarkable.

"But we can do so much more. The quality and provenance of our food and drink is second to none and is a key selling point. We know there's a massive global appetite for our premium, iconic products and now is the time to make the most of that and build the Scottish brand and reputation."

The £4.5 million food and drink export plan was developed by the industry and government. It will look at 15 markets in total, hoping to capitalise on a sector worth £5.4 billion in export sales in 2012.

The total value of overseas food and drink exports increased by 52% between 2007 and 2012, with exports of Scotch whisky growing by 87% in the decade to 2012 to £4.3 billion.

James Withers, chief executive of Scotland Food and Drink, said the scheme will help the rest of the sector follow the success of whisky.

"It will create a level of support for overseas trade that the food and drink industry in Scotland hasn't seen before and I'm confident by 2017 we will have doubled our export trade over a decade," he said.

The industry wants to meet export targets of £7.1 billion and overall turnover of £16.5 billion by that time.

The plan was announced at oatcake producer Nairn's in Edinburgh.

Chairman Mark Laing said: "We currently export to 30 countries around the world and have experienced the benefits from this, but we know there are much more potential opportunities out there.

"It's great to see Scotland's food and drink sector coming together as one to lay out a plan for the industry as a whole - a plan which we fully endorse. I'm hopeful that this will see Scotland's food and drink being exported and enjoyed far beyond our own shores."

Food and drink

Commenting & Moderation

We moderate all comments on Evening Times on either a pre-moderated or post-moderated basis. If you're a relatively new user then your comments will be reviewed before publication and if we know you well and trust you then your comments will be subject to moderation only if other users or the moderators believe you've broken the rules

Moderation is undertaken full-time 9am-6pm on weekdays, and on a part-time basis outwith those hours. Please be patient if your posts are not approved instantly.


Have you got a story?

Contact the news desk on 0141 302 6520 or email
Janice Bell

Janice Bell

You Couldn't Make This Up

Sun, sea and sangria beats an active break.




Michelle McManus

Michelle McManus

Columnist Michelle McManus is Sussed in the City, and loves to chat about anything and everything.

A weekly round up of social highlights

A weekly round up of social highlights

Cat's Eyes on Glasgow

The Look Awards, a bra fitting and going veggie at Usha’s.

Gail’s Gab

Gail’s Gab

Gail Sheridan is a mother-of-one and wife to Tommy and she likes to get political with the hot topic of the week in her column Gail’s Gab.