Scottish food and drink companies in the West of Scotland will get the chance to meet with local and regional buyers as the successful Showcasing Scotland event goes ‘on tour’.

Showcasing Scotland – West will be the first a series of regional events and will take place on Wednesday 7th March 2018 at Hampden Park, Glasgow.

Connect Local, the Scottish Government’s local food and drink marketing advisory service, will provide a series of free workshops for businesses across the region to develop commercial capabilities ahead of the Showcasing Scotland – West event. A unique buyer engagement event will also be available to buyers across the West Coast.

The announcement comes after a recent survey conducted by industry body Scotland Food & Drink found that 68% of Scots said they value local sourcing and almost half said that they plan to buy more local food and drink in the future.

Organisers are hoping the events will help grow sales of locally produced, authentic Scottish food and drink within local markets and will form a key part of the partnership approach between Scottish Government and industry to promote locally sourced and produced food and drink as outlined in the Scottish Government Programme for Government.

Fergus Ewing, Cabinet Secretary for Rural Economy said:

“We know that bringing together suppliers and buyers to do business at these type of events has a proven track record of working well.  The larger Showcasing Scotland events have been a huge success, with our producers securing significant new business through this interaction.

“In taking this concept to regional level, we are enabling more of our fantastic local producers the opportunity to grow their businesses by showcasing the very best of their produce to a range of prospective buyers.”

Fiona Richmond, Head of Regional Food at Scotland Food & Drink, commented:

“Showcasing Scotland – West provides an excellent platform to broaden the range and diversity of Scottish produce available in local markets across Scotland. The event will bring together our exceptional food and drink companies with buyers and provide the tools and opportunities to help grow sales on a local and regional level.”

Ceri Ritchie, Project Manager at Connect Local, said:

We are encouraging as many food and drink companies as possible to register for each of the three workshops, which will cover branding, supply chain and sales support and will take place across the West prior to the Showcasing Scotland event. The series of free workshops will ensure businesses are in a strong position when meeting with potential buyers if they then go on to attend Showcasing Scotland – West.”

Showcasing Scotland took place earlier this month with over 2000 meetings taking place between 135 Scottish food and drink companies and over 150 UK and global buyers at the two-day Showcasing Scotland event at Gleneagles.

The one-day, ‘meet the buyer’ regional Showcasing Scotland events have been developed by industry leaders Scotland Food & Drink, in partnership with Connect Local. Further events in Tayside, Highlands & Islands, the East and North East will take place across 2018/19.

For more information and online registration, visit www.showcasing.scot.