Scottish salmon exports to Japan leap by 72%

Salmon is a key export to Japan along with whisky. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
Salmon is a key export to Japan along with whisky. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
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Scottish businesses have been cashing in on Britain’s record levels of trade with Japan, with salmon exports leaping by almost three-quarters in the past year.

New figures show that UK exports to Japan totalled £14.8 billion in the year to the end of September 2019, up by 7.6 per cent on the previous 12 months.

The statistics, released by the Department for International Trade, reveal that Atlantic salmon exports to the Asian nation totalled 1,060 tonnes, worth £8.7 million and an annual increase of almost 72 per cent.

A growing taste for Scotch whisky has seen exports of the spirit to Japan rise to £147.2m in the latest 12-month period, an increase of 20.9 per cent, year-on-year.

The Scottish Salmon Company (SSC), which has some 60 sites across the west coast of Scotland and Hebrides and employs more than 650 people, recently secured a deal to supply Japanese sushi chain Genki Sushi with its Tartan Salmon brand.


Su Cox, new business development director for SSC, said: “Japan and the Far East is a key market and demand for our salmon has helped drive a 25 per cent increase in our exports to the region over the past year.

“We expect this to increase as more consumers discover this fine Scottish product. We take great pride in our Scottish heritage, and this is demonstrated through our commitment to bringing the finest quality Scottish salmon to worldwide markets.”

International trade secretary Liz Truss added: “Scotland has a world-renowned food and drink sector and it’s great to see Scottish salmon being served up in sushi restaurants across Japan.

“Japan is one our closest trading partners and it’s encouraging to see Scottish businesses already taking advantage of trading opportunities in one of the fastest growing markets globally.”

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