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Record British Food and Drink Exports

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Record British Food and Drink Exports

Record British Food and Drink Exports
March 14
16:01 2011

Exports of UK food and non-alcoholic drinks grew for the sixth consecutive year in 2010 to pass the £10b mark for the first time ever. UK food and drink export figures showed a healthy 11.4% increase on 2009 figures, bringing in a total of £10.83b, and highlighted healthy emerging markets amongst non-EU countries.

Amongst the highest performing sectors were dairy (up 24.6% to £977.1m), fish and seafood (up 13.8% to £1.326.9b), meat (+11.7% to £1.46b), prepared foods including soups, sauces and ice creams (+10.3% to £2.59b) and cereals and bakery (+8.1% to £2.08b).

Amongst the top export countries, Ireland remains the principal importer of UK products followed by France, Netherlands, Germany and Spain. Strong performance was also recorded in Hong Kong (+36.3%), the US (+28.9%) and the United Arab Emirates (+22.7%).

Highly encouraging has been the growth of new markets outside the current top 20 export destinations. South Africa recorded a +60.7% increase with a 70.1% increase in sweet biscuits and 170.6% increase in unsweetened cakes and baked goods. China recorded a 28.5% increase – incorporating a 1633% increase in dairy – and Israel a 38.9% overall increase with a 23.3% rise in sugar confection.

“This is excellent news for British food exporters and for the British economy. These figures show that our products are sought across the globe for their quality and great taste,” says Melanie Leech, director general of the Food and Drink Federation, the voice of the UK food and drink manufacturing industry. “The food and drink industry must be at the heart of the UK’s strategy for economic growth – and we look forward to working in partnership with the Minister and his colleagues in Defra, BIS and across Government to ensure that we maximise the economic potential of our sector and ensure that we play our part in contributing to global food security.”

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