South Korea is “fast gaining a taste for British beer”, with exports to the country shooting up 77% in the first half of 2017. Belgium and China had the highest exports value percentage growth in the first half, with shipments increasing 39% and 35% respectively.
The FDF also noted that while the devaluation of the pound following the Brexit vote has “helped to boost UK export competitiveness”, this also led to an increase in the cost of many imported ingredients and raw materials. As such, the UK’s food and drink trade deficit increased by 16% to -£12.4bn in H1 2017.
“The growth of food and alcoholic drink exports is very encouraging,” said Ian Wright CBE, director general of the FDF. “We want to work with government to take advantage of increased demand for UK products overseas and the opportunities that leaving the EU is expected to create.
“It is great to see such strong growth in our exports to EU Member States. The EU remains an essential market for UK exports as well as for supplies of key ingredients and raw materials used by our industry. We believe there are significant opportunities to grow our sector’s exports further still.