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Scottish Sales Expected To Boom

SCOTLAND, UK - A strong Scottish contingent is heading for the worlds largest seafood show, the European Seafood Exposition (ESE) in Brussels, (27-29 April 2010), where companies exhibiting on the Scottish Pavilion expect to generate sales leads in excess of 20 million.

A record year is forecast as demand for quality Scottish produce continues to outstrip supply. The value of business generated from the exhibition has increased year-on-year recently, rising from £16m in 2007 to £20m in 2009.

Sales resulting from last year’s attendance were generated from around £400,000 of public/private investment in the Scottish Pavilion, providing a direct return to the Scottish economy of £50 for every £1 spent.

Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead said: “The world’s largest seafood trade fair is the perfect platform to showcase Scotland’s iconic seafood. Our fishing and aquaculture sectors have worked hard to earn a reputation for quality, and the time has come to turn these plaudits into profits.

“The seafood industry has played a key role in growing the value of the sector, and in this, the Year of Food and Drink, we will continue to support them and raise awareness of our mouth watering national larder.”

17 companies representing the pelagic, whitefish, shellfish and salmon sectors will be present on the Scottish Pavilion, including several with increased stand sizes compared with previous years.

Scottish Development International (SDI) is an important supporter of the seafood sector, helping companies to achieve increased overseas business and develop international links. SDI has supported attendance at the exhibition since its inception 18 years ago, during which time more than 150 companies have benefited from assistance.

David Smith, interim chief executive at SDI, said: “We all know that Scotland is home to some of the most highly-acclaimed fish and seafood in the world, but in a tough economic climate it’s important to get out there and remind buyers why they should be selecting Scottish produce.

“Scottish food and drink, and particularly Scottish seafood, is one of our biggest exports, and by supporting these companies in their efforts to grow internationally, SDI is investing in growing the Scottish economy.”

Helping to attract international buyers to the Scottish Pavilion is a Seafood Bar, hosted by Seafood Scotland, where chefs from the Federation of Chefs Scotland expect to serve more than 15,000 samples of Scottish seafood.

Libby Woodhatch, chief executive of Seafood Scotland, said: “We are focusing on crab, langoustine and monkfish because they have been chosen for use by finalists in the internationally renowned Bocuse d’Or competition in Lyon in January 2011. At this competition, the world’s top chefs will vie to be No 1.

“The Bocuse d’Or committee’s choice of Scottish seafood for the first time in the competition’s history is an honour and a mark of respect for its quality and reputation. We aim to reinforce this by showcasing these species to global seafood buyers at ESE.”

Scott Landsburgh, chief executive of Scottish Quality Salmon and the Scottish Salmon Producers' Organisation, said: “The world’s largest seafood exhibition is an ideal opportunity to showcase top of the range Label Rouge Scottish Salmon as it is the ‘can't-miss’ fair for seafood companies with aspirations for growth and opportunity.

“The superior quality Label Rouge Scottish Salmon is in high demand, with sales of the premium product leaping 19 per cent to record levels in 2009.”

Paul McLaughlin, chief executive of Scotland Food & Drink, said: "ESE is one of the best showcases of Scottish produce within any sector, anywhere in the world. Scotland is already widely known as a Land of Food and Drink, for which our seafood and aquaculture industries must take a large portion of the credit.

"The Scotland Food & Drink pavilion at this superb event provides a platform to both consolidate this reputation and give individual businesses a strong presence from which they can exploit the many trading opportunities that exist.

"The combination of the Pavilion and the Seafood Bar, which showcases products to be used in the Bocuse D’Or next year, makes the Scottish area of ESE an exciting destination for buyers and delivers real value back to the exhibitors."

the Fish Site Editor

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