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Food and drink

An image of food and drink depicting the food and drink sector

In 2018, food and drink made up:

  • 20.7% of Scotland’s international exports (£6,960 million)
  • 9% of Scotland’s UK exports (£4.5 billion)

The food and drink sector covers a range of activities, such as:

  • farming
  • fishing
  • aquaculture
  • making products, for example: smoked salmon, whisky

How Scotland’s food and drink exports have changed since 2002

Graph showing how Scotland’s food and drink exports changed to the rest of the UK and internationally between 2002 and 2018.

Between 2002 and 2018 Scotland’s food and drink exports increased:

  • internationally from £3.2 billion to £6.9 billion
  • to the rest of the UK from £3.1 billion to £4.5 billion

Where we can sell more

A Trading Nation used evidence to work out where Scotland could sell the most in future.

This evidence shows where:

  • there’s a large or growing demand for imports
  • Scotland’s exporting less than other, similar countries

The similar countries are Finland, Norway, Denmark and Ireland.

Countries where there’s a large or growing demand for food and drink imports

Where Scotland’s currently exporting less than similar countries

What we're going to do

As part of the Scotland Food and Drink Export Plan, the public sector and industry co-fund market specialists in 15 countries.

This helps to support:

  • Scotland Food and Drink’s approach to exporting premium products in retail and food service
  • mentoring and matching companies through the Export Collaboration Charter and the First Minister’s Export Challenge
  • industry in making trade agreements

You can find more information on Scotland’s food and drink sector in A Trading Nation.

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