Salmond woos Scottish food and drink industry with promise of marketing push

The Scottish National Party looks to be trying to win over executives in the country’s food and drink industry unsure about the case for independence by promising a global marketing campaign to exploit “the opportunity of lifetime” a Yes vote would provide the sectors. 

Famous Grouse logo
The SNP has promised a global marketing campaign to promote Scottish food and drink such as Famous Grouse.

The SNP leader and the man fronting the Yes to Scottish independence campaign Alex Salmond said yesterday (3 September) he would work with the industry and trade body Scotland Food and Drink to “take full advantage of the global publicity” the independence campaign and independence would generate.

“Scotland is currently in the international spotlight like never before, but the huge publicity generated by a yes vote – and the transition to independence – will be the opportunity of a lifetime for our food and drink sector to extend its global reach even further,” he said.

Some executives at some of Scotland’s biggest food and drinks companies do still need convincing of the opportunities independence will bring, however.

Baxters Food Group executive chairman Audrey Baxter and Ian Curle, CEO of Macallan and The Famous Grouse maker Edrington were among 130 business leaders that last month signed a letter saying the business case for independence has not yet been made, a claim pro independence body Business for Scotland told the BBC is not borne from the “facts and figures” from its busioness supporters. 

The Scotland Food and Drink has set itself a task of growing the value of the industry to £16.5bn by 2017.  It is also working with the Scottish Government to grow the value of exports of products such as whisky and salmon to £4.5bn.

The Scottish referendum vote takes place September 18. Latest polling  shows the Yes campaign is closing the gap on those fighting to maintain the union. 

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