The UK government’s Food and Drink Export Council (FDEC) is set to hold its first ever meeting in Perth, Scotland, next month.

The meeting, which will be held on Wednesday, November 8 during International Trade week at the Black Watch, is aimed at Scottish food and drink businesses already exporting that wish to expand and grow their exports.

The free to attend event will consist of interactive sessions on creating strategic export plans, understanding export markets and identifying and building relationships with overseas partners.

The FDEC is a collaborate expert committee comprised of representatives from the Scottish government, UK government, industry and other devolved administrations focused on boosting UK food and drink exports.

UK government minister for exports and co-chair of the FDEC, Malcolm Offord, said:

“This event will be a big help to any Scottish food and drink exporters who are looking to expand their sales abroad.

“We know there is huge demand internationally for the high-quality food and drink we produce here in Scotland, and the FDEC are looking to do all that we can to help businesses take advantages of the opportunities that are out there.” 

Scottish exports

The meeting is being delivered in partnership between the Department for Business and Trade and Scottish Development International (SDI) on behalf of the FDEC.

Global head of trade for consumer industries at SDI, Ewen Cameron, said: “Scotch whisky is the number one UK food and drink export, with Scottish salmon the UK’s leading food export.

“Scotland has a vital role to play in the success of UK food and drink exports, with this council meeting providing a platform to embed an appreciation and awareness of our strengths with council members and showcase some of our leading exporting companies.

“We look forward to continuing to work closely with other council members, and bringing SDI’s deep knowledge of international growth opportunities, strong relationships with our portfolio of exporters, and effective international networks to deliver economic growth across all regions of Scotland.”

Chief executive of Seafood Scotland and founding member of the FDEC, Donna Fordyce, said the event is a perfect opportunity for Scottish food and drink businesses to learn more about export expansion.

“We know that many Scottish food and drink businesses are already exporting successfully in overseas markets,” she said.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to learn from your peers, find out what works – and what doesn’t – and build your overseas network too.

“This event will enable businesses to accelerate and refine their exporting ambitions in a welcoming and trusted environment.

“We will also be sharing expertise on how to reduce the administrative burden of exporting abroad, something we know will be very welcome.”