Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) has officially recognized the Bennet group, based in Italy, for longstanding loyalty and commitment to Scotch Beef PGI.
Piercarlo Botta received the importer award from Richard Lochhead, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment, during a ceremony on the QMS stand at Anuga, the world’s largest food trade fair. QMS has a significant presence this week at Anuga, where 10 Scottish red meat exporters are present.
Bennet group, which was established 45 years ago, owns 67 hyper markets and shopping malls located in the north of Italy. The group is firmly established as one of the most innovative and forward-looking operators in the Italian fresh food sector.
The group began importing Scotch Beef from Scotland in 2006 as a customer of Bridge of Allan-based Scotbeef. Since then the two companies have worked closely to increase sales and widen the range of products on offer with the main cuts Bennet currently imports being rump, knuckle, fillet, roast beef and chuck. Bennett also imports some Scotch Lamb.
“What impressed us from the start about Scotch Beef was its quality image and exceptional taste and tenderness – all of which are highly prized by our customers,” said Piercarlo Botta.
“Bennet has always focused on providing top quality fresh foods and our customers are impressed with the fact that Scotch Beef is produced in wide open spaces with the plentiful green pastures which Italians associate with Scotland.”
QMS Chairman, Jim McLaren, said: “Bennet has an impressive track record, established over almost five decades, of delivering quality produce for discerning customers and we are delighted with the support and dedication they have shown the Scotch Beef brand over the past decade.
“The award we are presenting them with today recognizes this and we look forward to their continued support as the company grows and strengthens in the Italian marketplace.”
Mr McLaren added: “It is very encouraging to work with a company like Bennet which truly values and understands what sets Scotch Beef apart – including the quality assurance behind the brand which ensures high standards of cattle management and welfare.
“It is also heartening to see the recognition of the Scottish red meat industry’s very positive environmental message – our extensive areas of grassland are ideal for producing top quality beef and lamb.”
Simon Dowling, Director at Scotbeef Bridge of Allan, said he was delighted with the news.
“Italy has always been an important market for Scotbeef and this award is well deserved. Bennet’s supermarket has been a great advocate for the Scottish meat industry over the last 10 years and now this award recognises that commitment. We hope to continue with this and develop the business further in the future.”
Pictured from left to right: Jim McLaren, Chairman QMS, SImon Dowling, Director at Scotbeef Bridge of Allan, Piercarlo Botta, Bennet group and Richard Lochhead, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment