As a country, Wales has a lot to be proud of; we have some of the world’s best beaches, inspirational landscapes and a strong national identity and culture. But above all that, people both in and out of Wales love our food and drink. And that’s something that is contributing greatly to our food and drink industry’s exponential growth.
The industry has now grown to be worth nearly £7billion and last year we exported £539m of food and drink produce to the world. But the sector doesn’t just contribute to the economy; it serves the wellbeing of our people, our communities and our shared environment.These will be the pillars of our future strategy. The sector is Wales’ route to the world, raising awareness of where we are and who we are. Global consumers increasingly value quality and products with a story, and it’s safe to say that our food and drink is pretty legendary.
In 2014, a vision was laid out in the Action Plan for the Food and Drink Industry, to establish how the industry would develop over the next six years to reach its full potential. Ambitious growth targets were a key theme. Our aim was to drive collaboration between industry and government to achieve a 30% growth in Welsh food and drink to £7billion – a target we’re close to reaching ahead of schedule.
To establish the next phase of the strategic plan,Welsh Government and the Food & Drink WalesIndustry Board (FDWIB) – the voice of Wales’food and drink industry – have announced thelaunch of a strategic consultation which willoversee the next period of our exciting growthof the sector in Wales.
The FBWIB and Welsh Government are callingfor industry representatives to read the proposedconsultation and respond to it. Everyone withinthe industry should have a desire and urge tocontribute their thoughts, concerns and hopesfor the sector as it enters its next stage of growth.If you like it then tell us. If you think it can beimproved, then let us know how and where youcould improve it.
Collaboration has seen us achieve so much and it’s only through the same cooperative approach that we will maintain this success. Let’s collectively believe in our ambition and help shape the direction of our amazing industry.