This article from Undercurrent News, 2013, shows the importance Scotland’s fishermen place on clear marketing of their goods:
‘Scottish provenance of smoked salmon and shellfish will be key driver for growth at Associated Seafoods’ new processing facility, part of which is already up and running, the company said.
Development work on Associated Seafoods (ASL) multi-million pound upgrade program of its seafood processing facility in Buckie, north-east Scotland, is progressing well with the company announcing plans to use the Scottish provenance of its smoked salmon and shellfish as the main promotional focus for future market growth, the company said’
While many of the unique selling points (USP) for Scotland’s produce are protected by EU legislation, it is the job of the Scottish Government to help Scotland’s food and drink producers to access that protection. Their webpage, dating from 2010, has many useful and interesting links:
‘Information about food and drink is becoming increasingly important to consumers, businesses and organisations. This information includes where food and drink comes from. The Scottish Government aims to provide clear, concise and consistent advice and guidance on food and drink labels and menus.’
When protection for Scotch Beef and Scotch Lamb were left out of the recent Canada – Japan – EU trade deals, there was astonishment within the farming community, articulated clearly by Farmer Jones in this podcast:
The writer and broadcaster, Lesley Riddoch, gave Keep Scotland the Brand a mention in her weekly podcast on the 22nd of December, 2017.
While Keep Scotland the Brand is not a campaign about Scottish independence, Lesley Riddoch wrote this piece for The National about the importance of Scottish provenance and her views about how that ties in with the constitutional question:
‘…. Scotch Beef, Scotch Lamb and Scotch whisky are just three products set to lose their protected status after Brexit. Will the UK Government really risk losing valuable trade deals to protect the jewels of Scotland’s trading crown? ‘
Perth fishmonger, George Campbell and Sons, The Seafood Specialists, explain on their website what provenance is and why it matters:
‘… you’re giving it a stamp of assurance and quality; guaranteeing its origins and geographical birth. For those of us who care about where we source our meat and fish, the seasonality of our veggies and the ethos of our suppliers, this is an important piece of information. It lets us know we’re doing our bit for planet and producer and ensures we’re making ethical choices while enjoying food at its very best.’
This was not Marks and Spencer’s finest moment, as reported in The National:
‘The shop’s customer service representative wrote: “I have received the email from you regarding your order and I am able to inform you that the National Scottish Referendum has taken place and the majority of Scotland decided that the lovely country of Scotland would belong in and stay within the UK and will be a part of the country known as England.”’
“Many of new Scottish gins hitting the shops this festive season, The Herald can reveal, are made by contract distillers in London and Birmingham. And, unlike for Scotch, which has name protection, there is nothing to stop brands draping themselves in the Saltire.
Established gin makers are worried. They fear drinkers will be left with a taste as bitter as some junipers when they realise they have paid a premium to buy what amounts to a supermarket clear spirit with a symbolic dash of Scottish “botanics”, such as heather or seaweed.”
The Press and Journal reports:
“NFU Scotland (NFUS) has called for the upcoming Good Food Nation Bill to include measures which incentivise the public sector to buy local and encourage shoppers to make home-grown choices.
The farmers’ union said it was vital that the voices of farmers and crofters were included in the Bill, which aspires to make Scotland a country where people from every walk of life take pride and pleasure in, and benefit from, the food they buy, serve, and eat day by day.
It described the food and drink sector as the “jewel in Scotland’s economic crown” with an annual value of £14.4billion.”
The Press and Journal reports:
“Food security cannot be guaranteed in a post-Brexit world, according to NFU Scotland (NFUS) chief executive Scott Walker.
In his address to the union’s annual meeting he highlighted recent vegetable shortages, and said that until now consumers had taken food security for granted.
“This week has provided a wake-up call to all those who do not take food security seriously,” he said.”