News Item Default

Call to Food and Drink and Tourism businesses to feed into new strategy

Published: 11/01/2018

Recent VisitScotland figures have highlighted that 62%* of holidaymakers to Scotland said trying locally sourced food and drink is an important part of their visit.

In a bid to capitalise on the benefits of a close relationship between food and drink producers and the tourism sector, a range of industry representatives and public agencies are working together to develop a new strategy - the ‘National Framework to Grow Food Tourism’.

The first step in developing this is to seek the views of Scottish businesses in the food, drink and tourism sectors. HIE, a member of the strategy board, is encouraging as many Highlands and Islands businesses as possible to feed in their ideas.

The short survey can be completed here before January 22.

Fergus Ewing, Rural Affair and Connectivity Minister said:

“Our food and drink industry is world renowned for its quality, and is a key contributor to Scotland’s economy. Whether people visit Scotland to sample our spectacular natural landscapes or our fantastic cities, the one thing you can guarantee is that visitors will eat and drink when they are here.  

“Our Programme for Government outlined our commitment to develop a national food tourism action plan, which drives to promote local produce and extol the virtues of the quality and provenance of our wonderful larder, and I would encourage all businesses to get involved and help us shape the plan by participating in the survey.”

Who’s involved?

*The Food Tourism Strategy Board consists of:

  • James Withers, Scotland Food & Drink
  • Marc Crothall, Scottish Tourism Alliance
  • Charlie Smith, VisitScotland
  • Anna Miller, Highlands and Islands Enterprise
  • Alastair Dobson, Taste of Arran
  • Calum Ross, British Hospitality Association (Scotland)
  • John Forteith, Consultant
  • Caroline Millar, The Hideaway Experiences
  • Brenda Anderson, Tasting Scotland
  • John Henderson, Born in the Borders
  • Fergus Younger, SAOS
  • Graham Suttle, Kained Holdings


There is also an international aspect to the strategy development. Good Food Tourism (GFT) is a branch within the Canadian based, not for profit Culinary Tourism Alliance (CTA). It works with destinations at different stages along the food tourism development cycle to bridge the gap between the food and travel sectors.

Related Articles