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Scottish companies will be hoping to grab a slice of Asia’s growing foodservice industry this week by targeting senior buyers from the region’s leading hotel and restaurant groups.

Smoked salmon plate

Scottish Development International’s food and drink specialists from Greater China, South East Asia and India will be at the To The Table Asia 2016 event in Taipei, showcasing products from 22 Scottish companies and meeting with 60 influential buyers from the foodservice and hospitality sector, including the Shangri La, Oberoi, Peninsula, Regent and Centara Hotel & Resorts. 

Capitalising on success

They will be looking to capitalise on growing demand and interest in Scottish products by some of the top food and beverage establishments around the world. 

Scottish products can increasingly be found in premium retailers such as Fortnum & Mason and Harrods in London to Michelin-starred restaurants such as Bacchanalia in Singapore and L’Atelier de Joel Rubuchon in Hong Kong. 

Scottish companies have such a great story to tell around provenance, from the traceability of Scotch beef, to the sustainability of Scottish seafood and the organic nature of many of the raw ingredients.

Neil McInnes, head of food & drink, tourism and textiles for SDI, Asia Pacific

In Asia, the finest Scotch beef can now be enjoyed in a number of Singapore’s top restaurants, including the Long Bar Steakhouse at the prestigious Raffles Hotel, while Cathay Pacific’s First Class passengers are regularly treated to Loch Fyne smoked salmon.

Neil McInnes, head of food & drink, tourism and textiles for SDI in Asia Pacific says: “Although we’re seeing some real success and great examples of Scottish companies winning business in Asia’s hospitality industry, there are many more Scottish companies who could be working with these hotel groups. They already have a great track record of supplying 5 star hotels and Michelin starred restaurants in the UK and Europe and we want to see that success emulated in Asia.

“A lot of these are big brands - Baxters, Highland Spring, Mackie’s, Paterson Arran and the Scottish Salmon Company – but we also have some more niche players including rapeseed oil producers like Culisse and Supernature and tea companies such as Simpsons Tea. These companies have developed specific products for hotels and restaurants and are seeing significant demand from chefs around the world. 

Responding to consumer trends in Asia

Asia’s foodservice industry is forecast to grow by US $200 billion between 2014 and 2019 and almost three quarters of that growth will come from China alone.

While some segments of the market – particularly at the lower end - are facing pressures, there are opportunities at the more premium end of the market as consumer trends shift with a significant rise in the number of sophisticated dining consumers with increased spending power. 

These consumers are looking for quality, high-end products and want to know more about where the food they eat comes from, especially as a result of a number of food scandals in Asia in recent years and an increased focus on healthy eating. 

Neil McInnes adds: “Scottish companies have such a great story to tell around provenance – from the traceability of Scotch beef to the sustainability of Scottish seafood and the organic nature of many of the raw ingredients our producers source from local farms in Scotland. 

“Scotland already enjoys a great profile in Asia thanks to our whisky industry. We will be aiming to take advantage of that reputation to showcase the very best of what else Scotland has to offer and make sure buyers from Asia know what Scotland stands for.”

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