Delegates from six Scottish seafood companies have headed to the world’s second largest seafood exhibition, which takes place in China this week.
The China Fisheries & Seafood Expo, in Dalian, runs from 6-8 November. More than 30 people from six Scottish companies will be accompanied by four Scottish chefs, all aiming to deliver a strong ‘seafood from Scotland’ message at the British stand.
Their presence will be enhanced by a Scottish demonstration kitchen, which is sponsored by a collaborative project to maximise opportunities in emerging markets.
The Scottish message will be highlighted by cookery demonstrations and sampling sessions undertaken by chefs from the Federation of Chefs Scotland, who will be preparing mackerel, brown crab, scallops, salmon, razor clams, lobster, smoked salmon, squid, langoustine and herring. A sushi chef will also be in attendance to demonstrate how the quality of these species makes many of them highly suitable for the discerning sushi market.
Lunar Freezing, Macduff Shellfish, Burgons of Eyemouth/ Blue Sea Food Company, Fresh Catch, Scottish Fishermen’s Organisation and Denholm Seafoods will be joining Shellfish Express from England and Fortuna Seafoods from the Falkland Islands, on the stand.
Seafood from Britain and Seafish are hosting a networking reception for customers and potential buyers at the Shangri La hotel on Wednesday , featuring a magnificent Scottish seafood banquet and chef demonstrations.
“The unprecedented size of the Scottish contingent highlights the importance of this emerging market to businesses in Scotland, and is one of the key reasons we will be supporting them to seek new trade in the region over the next few years. We hope that the ‘Emerging Markets’ programme will help to raise awareness of the high quality of seafood available from Scotland, and assist companies to build relationships with new buyers in the marketplace,’ explained Seafood Scotland’s Clare Dixon.
The presence of Scottish companies at the show marks the start of a month-long series of activities in key countries and cities – including Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Beijing and Shanghai.
“Total Scottish seafood exports to these key countries in 2011 were up 56% on the previous year, with more than 14,000 tonnes worth in excess of £50 million reaching the market. The value of exports to China in 2011 were up 103% year-on-year and, by the end of July 2012, 86% of last year’s total tonnage had already been exported. Hong Kong exports are also performing well, with both value and volume up year on year to July 2012. We anticipate that total sales to these target markets will greatly exceed the 2011 total,” said Clare. “In particular, scallops, brown crab, lobster and salmon are exceeding their 2011 performance across the region.”
Fresh Catch, one of Scotland’s largest pelagic processors, will be launching their new branded whole cooked frozen brown crab at the Expo. Last year the company sold just under 200 tonnes of brown crab to China, packed for them by Burgons of Eyemouth on the southeast coast of Scotland, and the Blue Sea Food Company in England. Expectations for this year are to double sales of the Fresh Catch brand, to 400 tonnes, in supermarkets and wholesalers in mainland China. The product is specifically destined for the specialised food gift market, which reaches its peak in the lead-up to Chinese New Year. It will be packed in a partnership between Fresh Catch and other crab companies in Scotland and the UK.
The company is also looking to expand sales of Scottish langoustine by working in partnership with SFO in China, and is seeking to establish other species such as scallops and squid by forming strategic partnerships with other Scottish companies.
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