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Collaboration to boost exports

Charter helps food and drink sector learn from whisky

Food and drink charter

The Scotch Whisky Association and Scotland Food & Drink have drawn up an Export Collaboration Charter with ten commitments to encourage the sharing of best export practice, knowledge, and networks across the sector.

It builds on the lessons learned by the Scotch Whisky industry as it developed markets around the world.

Working closely with Scottish Development International, it will have a key role to play in helping Scotland reach its ambition of increasing exports from the current level of £5.1 billion to £7.1bn by 2017.

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.

“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. “

David Frost, Scotch Whisky Association chief executive, said: “We want to help Scottish food and drink sectors learn from the success of Scotch – the country’s leading single product export – and this new collaboration shows our commitment to working with food and drink exporters to deliver growth for Scotland.”

James Withers, Scotland Food & Drink chief executive, said: “When we launched our new food and drink export strategy, we explicitly prioritised working more collaboratively with partners and learning from Scotch Whisky’s success. This Charter delivers on that and will allow it to happen in a deeper way than we’ve seen before.”

Scottish Development International’s head of food & drink Susan Beattie, said: “This Charter will help even more of Scotland’s food and drinks products break into new markets abroad.”

Launched 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.

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