BRITISH food exports hit a new record during the first half of 2017 – thanks to an unprecedented demand for salmon.
Exports of the fish favourite leapt by more than 53 per cent to a value of £408-million, the Food and Drink Federation announced today. Sales were also helped by the fall in the value of the pound.
The Federation said salmon, which mainly comes from Scotland was the second largest commodity export after Scotch whisky. Total UK food and drink exports during the first six months of this year increased by 8.5 per cent to £10.2 billion.
Andy Bing, sales director of Loch Duart Salmon in North West Scotland. told BBC News: “British salmon is becoming more popular globally, This half we’ve sold more than we ever have,” he said, adding that the firm’s main export markets were France, the US, Italy, and Switzerland.UK salmon exports have grown after Chilean producers suffered problems in 2015 with algal blooms that killed a large amount of their fish, he said.
He remained optimistic about the eventual post-Brexit trade deals that can be struck with EU countries. “Europe needs lovely Scottish salmon just as we need lovely French wine and wonderful German cars,” he said.
However, he added that Loch Duart was “finding it difficult to plan without better guidance” from the government about Brexit. And the Federation has warned that if the UK does not get a favourable post Brexit trade deal then food exports – and that includes salmon – will become less competitive.