‘Collaboration is key’ for Scottish food and drink exporters

‘Collaboration is key’ for Scottish food and drink exporters

A new partnership between the Scotch Whisky Association and Scotland Food and Drink is looking to significantly boost Scottish exporters.

The partnership, working closely with Scottish Development International, will play a key in helping Scotland reach its ambition of increasing exports from the current level of £5.1bn to £7.1bn by 2017.

To help make this happen, the new Export Collaboration Charter has agreed 10 commitments that will encourage the sharing of best export practice, knowledge, and networks across the sector.

Launched yesterday (17 Dec) in Livingston at Paterson Arran, a leading shortbread maker, the Export Collaboration Charter will:

  • Promote collaboration through the regular exchange of information on export markets and opportunities.
  • Share experience on different markets, co-operating on advice and mentoring.
  • Facilitate working sessions with export specialists to encourage best practice.
  • Create a company match-making service that encourages internationalisation.
  • Arrange seminars on market access and protecting intellectual property in export markets.
  • Discuss trade policy mechanisms and opportunities to tackle trade barriers.
  • Advertise potential export and commercial opportunities to members.
  • Partner on a regular basis to support the work of the Scotland Food & Drink network.
  • Co-operate so that Scottish products are regularly showcased at whisky events in export markets.
  • Work together to support a number of Scotland Food & Drink and Scottish Development International events in priority markets.
    • Cabinet secretary for rural affairs, food and the environment, Richard Lochhead, said: “As we near the end of the Year of Food and Drink, it is appropriate that we look towards the future.

      “I welcome this Export Collaboration Charter from the Scotch Whisky Association and Scotland Food & Drink, which can help deliver even greater future success for Scottish food and drink companies looking to sell across the globe.

      “It’s great that the SWA is showing its commitment to the food sector, as well as whisky, and I believe today’s Charter will potentially be a game-changer.

      “Working together can lead to great things and I am confident that this collaboration will play a crucial role in helping the industry grow in strength and stature internationally.”

      Scottish Development International’s head of food & drink, Susan Beattie, added: “Scotland has shown the world that it can produce globally competitive products across the whole of the food and drinks spectrum, with Scotch being our most famous export.

      “This Charter will help even more of Scotland’s food and drinks products break into new markets abroad while re-investing back into the country the insights and knowledge already gained from developing Scotch Whisky into a global leader.

      “It takes the Export Partnership to new levels, enhancing the existing collaboration between SDI, Scotland Food & Drink and trade associations.”