The Scottish red meat industry is making its presence keenly felt in Hong Kong this week at HOFEX, the largest food and hospitality trade show in Asia-Pacific.
A number of Scottish processors, along with representatives from Quality Meat Scotland, are attending the event as part of a delegation from the Scottish food and drink sector led by Scottish Development International (SDI). With an exhibition size of over 60,000m 2 it is expected that around 35,000 professional buyers such as hoteliers, restaurateurs and executive chefs will visit HOFEX to look at sourcing products.
According to Uel Morton, QMS Chief Executive, who is attending the event, HOFEX offers a valuable opportunity to secure trade for Scotch Beef PGI and Scotch Lamb PGI with the Hong Kong market.
“Hong Kong has been identified by the industry as an important market for premium high quality Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb. It is also a potential growth market for certain products which are not keenly sought after by the British and European markets,” said Mr Morton.
“In the premium market our focus is very much on communicating what sets Scotch Beef PGI and Scotch Lamb PGI apart in terms of quality and reputation. Our animals have a diet which is largely based on grass and they are produced without any use of growth hormones and with robust quality assurance.
“However, Hong Kong is also an important cross-road for alternative products such as bones, tendons and offal. These have a lower value in Europe but enjoy a higher value in some parts of Asia.
“The collaboration between QMS and SDI at HOFEX, supported by the work of Scotland Food & Drink, is allowing us to develop new contacts as well as strengthening contacts already established between Scotland and the Hong Kong importers and traders.”
Anne MacColl, chief executive of Scottish Development International said: “We’ve been hearing some really encouraging feedback from the team out at HOFEX this week about the very welcome reception that Scottish produce is receiving from Asian buyers.
“This show is only one element in our strategy to help the Scottish food and drink industry target new and emerging markets and we will continue to work closely with QMS and other partners to open up new trade opportunities for many more Scottish companies.
“Our ambition is to grow the number of Scottish companies who export. To achieve this, we need to ensure that we equip Scottish companies with the skills needed to export efficiently, for example through our Smart Exporter programme, and provide all of the on-the-ground support and advice we can, through our network of GlobalScots and our overseas offices. I want to encourage Scottish companies to rise to the challenge and really see the benefits of international trade.”