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Plan to grow Scottish food & drink exports announced
A second phase of the Scotland Food and Drink Export Plan has been announced, to help the industry to achieve its overall aim to double turnover value to £30 billion by 2030.
The Food and Drink Export Plan is supported by £4.5 million of joint funding from the Scottish Government, industry and Scottish Development International. This second phase of the plan will last from 2019 to 2024.
The funding will help Scottish companies take their products into new and existing markets, and ‘in-market specialists’ will be employed to offer expert advice, forge stronger relationships with buyers and encourage Scottish businesses to develop new products.
Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing said: “Scotland’s food and drink sector has grown year on year, increasing by 78% since 2007. Last year exports reached a record level of £6.3 billion, which is in part thanks to the success of the first phase of the export plan.
“This is a hugely exciting time for the sector and I’m confident that government and industry will continue to work together successfully to identify new opportunities for Scotland, with the clear strategy set out by this latest plan.
“The need to explore and exploit international markets could not be clearer, given the current uncertainty around our future trading relationship with Europe – our single largest market, which is eight times larger than the UK market alone.”
The Scottish Government has also recently launched a wider export strategy – A Trading Nation – which set out plans for growing Scotland’s exports to add around £3.5 billion to GDP and create 17,500 more jobs.
James Withers, Chief Executive of Food Drink Scotland, added: “Food and drink has become Scotland’s biggest export and yet there are still huge opportunities still in front of us. From Tokyo to Toronto, there is a growing demand for world-class products with a strong provenance story and on that front Scotland can compete with anywhere in the world.
“The development of a global team of trade specialists in cities around the world has been a game-changing investment for Scotland. Industry and government has come together to share funding and we now have more international customers than ever before wanting to do business with Scottish food and drink producers. Our ambition is to double the size of our industry to £30 billion by 2030 and this next export plan will be crucial to unlocking our full potential.”