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Food & drink leaders gather for annual industry conference

Thursday, 12 September 2019 Industry news,Scotland Food and Drink news

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More than 370  leaders from the Scottish food and drink industry will gather in Edinburgh today (12 September) for an annual industry conference.

This year’s Scotland Food & Drink Conference and AGM will focus on how building strong, consistent brands can help companies thrive, build consumer confidence and help drive sustainable, responsible growth within the industry.

Sponsored by Clydesdale Bank and law firm, CMS, delegates will hear from expert speakers from around the world, including national branding experts from Ireland, Wales and New Zealand.  

Research findings from Scotland Food & Drink’s Market Intelligence team on ‘Provenance Perspectives’ – the headline insights from the Shopper & Diner Research on the level of importance placed on local and Scottish food and drink by the UK and Scottish consumer – will also be revealed for the first time.

James Withers, Chief Executive at Scotland Food & Drink, said: “In Scotland we’re blessed with a bountiful larder and talented, passionate fishermen, farmers and food and drink producers. Collectively, we are united behind a single goal: to make Scotland a model of collaboration in food and drink, a world leader in responsible, profitable growth and home to a sector worth £30bn by 2030.

“However, if we’re to achieve that, there’s a special ingredient the recipe needs – brand Scotland. This year’s conference focuses on how we can collectively and collaboratively build individual and national brands to drive domestic and international growth.

“For a nation like ours, national branding is an incredibly powerful tool. It forges a platform from which our producers can compete in global markets. Thanks to our sustainable red meat and seafood, to small-batch gin and craft beers, innovative bakeries and dairies, people across the UK and overseas increasingly associate Scotland with quality.

“Despite the turbulent times that undoubtedly lie ahead, building strong, consistent brands can help companies thrive, build consumer confidence and help drive sustainable, responsible growth for Scotland’s food and drink industry – that’s what we hope to achieve through this year’s conference.”

Brian Richardson, UK Head of Agriculture for Clydesdale Bank, said: “We are very proud to be sponsoring the conference again this year. The food and drink sector is an incredibly important part of the Scottish economy and has demonstrated its strength and resilience time and time again.”

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