Food and Drink Industry Report 2020

01 December 2019

The Food and Drink Industry Report 2020 looks in particular at exports and the developing markets of China, India Japan, UAE and USA, all of which have seen considerable year-on-year growth. Santander's export team provides analysis of the potential and challenges around each territory together with essential information for any company considering trading with these harder to reach markets.

The report highlights other important issues for the industry including increasing automation, sustainable packaging and diet and health are also highlighted in the report as areas where industry is committed to making a difference. 


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FDF Foreword

These are testing times for food and drink manufacturing businesses.

A heightened focus on the role of plastics in food packaging is likely to mean tougher regulation. Similarly, concerns about health and obesity rates already mean that UK manufacturers face significant challenges from government (and there is much more to come).

Finally, I fear our future trading relationship with the EU will continue to be overshadowed by uncertainty for a long time to come.

When the going gets tough, it's important above all to have good friends you can count on. FDF's purpose - our mission - is to be that good friend to food and drink businesses.

Santander is certainly a very good friend to FDF. Our partnership enables us to extend the reach and quality of our services to FDF members and Santander customers alike. Santander experts offer us wise counsel and access to their extensive network of contacts. We have learned a great deal from them and, I hope, the obverse is true too.

Though their expertise is wide-ranging, Santander offers a particular capability around exports. As you will see in this report, UK food and drink exports have been a singular success in recent years, achieving strong (in some cases double-digit) year-on-year growth. But we start from a relatively low base, in that only around one-in-five of our food and drink businesses are exporters. In some competitor markets, that proportion is much higher.

Encouraging more businesses to overcome their concerns about exporting is a high priority for FDF and for Santander. We are seeking to persuade the Government to invest (alongside us) in more specialist support to help companies take advantage of more export opportunities. We know that the world loves the provenance, impeccable quality and fabulous taste of UK food and drink, so now is the time to seize that opportunity.

It is a great pleasure to work with Santander and I commend this paper to you.

Ian Wright, CBE
Chief Executive, FDF