Demand for quality Scottish produce remains high and Scotland’s farmers, crofters and producers are working hard to ensure it gets from farm to fork.
Thanking Scottish consumers for their continued support, President Martin Kennedy said: “In these well documented, challenging times for all, it is extremely encouraging and appreciated that there is a demand for Scottish produce. We as an industry have much to be proud of, with our high environmental and animal welfare standards, and I want to thank the public for their support of Scottish agriculture.”
“Consumers making informed choices to ask for and buy Scottish produce in restaurants, shops, or direct from source is hugely appreciated. It is important that supermarkets also play their part in ensuring that British and Scottish produce is readily available on shelves.”
He added: “COP presents a fantastic platform to tell the world about the strides Scottish agriculture is making to tackle climate change and improve the environment while producing fresh, local, and sustainable food and drink. Our #FarmingForTheFuture social media campaign aims to highlight what our industry is already doing to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045, and to emphasise that we are more than ready to face the challenges ahead. We would welcome your support of this campaign by sharing the assets we have made available on our website (NFU Scotland | /farming-for-the-future.aspx) on social media over the next few weeks as we approach COP26”.
In figures obtained from Quality Meat Scotland (QMS), in the 12 weeks leading up to3rd July 2021, sales of red meat were up 7% in the UK versus the same period pre-covid in 2019. This increase was largely driven by sales of beef.
During the month of August figures also showed significant growth, particularly in sausages and fresh beef, which were up £5m and £1.7m respectively.
A growing interest in food provenance can also be seen in the sign-up figures for the Institute of Auctioneers and Appraisers in Scotland’s (IAAS) pioneering Lamb Bank for St Andrews Day 2021 – a campaign which seeks to give even more school children the opportunity to taste, eat, and cook with Scotch Lamb on the patron saint’s day this 30 November. Already this year over 175 schools totalling 25,000 pupils have signed up - more than double 2020’s total.
This comes alongside news from AHDB that sales of dairy products in the UK have also increased for the second year in a row, with cow’s milk up 4.2% and cheese up 4.5% on the previous year.
With COP26, the UN’s annual climate summit, happening in Glasgow this year on the 1-12 November these positive industry figures show consumers are increasingly looking to shop local and see Scottish red meat and dairy as key components of healthy, sustainable diets.