Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) will be flying the flag and Laurent Vernet, its head of marketing, said that Germany remained a key market for Scotch beef and lamb – with exports up 23 per cent last year.
Exports to the Nordic countries, Baltic countries and central and eastern European countries rose by 19, 197 and 444 per cent, respectively in 2016. However, France and Benelux countries accounted for almost 68 per cent of Scottish beef and lamb exports.
Exports outside of the EU, mainly to South Africa, Hong Kong and Thailand, represented 5.4 per cent of total of red meat exports.
“These export figures show that there are still substantial opportunities for the Scottish red meat industry to develop and grow business inside and outside of the EU,” said Vernet.
• Speaking at the weekend, rural economy secretary Fergus Ewing referenced Burns Night to highlight what he termed the “threat” of leaving the European single market.
Ewing said the Burns supper showed the esteem which Scottish culture and produce enjoyed around the globe, adding: “The EU is Scotland’s biggest overseas food and drink export market, with exports of food and drink worth £2 billion in 2015.
“We simply can’t ignore the disastrous impact that leaving the single market, and the 500 million people within it, could have on our food and drink sector.”