World craves British food this Christmas

Export | Food & Drink | South East

More diners across the world will be tucking into British produce than ever before this Christmas, with global sales of British turkey, Brussel sprouts and other festive favourites hitting record levels in recent years.

The Great British Christmas Dinner is set to be enjoyed globally, with 64 countries in 2018 – 17 more than previous years – importing British turkeys for a quintessential festive feast. Meanwhile, global demand for the UK’s Brussel sprouts has increased by almost 40%. This festive staple is proving particularly popular in the Netherlands, which makes up 73% of the £1.5m market.

Rounding up the Christmas plate, worldwide demand for British carrots and turnips has increased by 52%.

Meanwhile, 109 countries around the world will be tucking into British cheese on Christmas Day, with the Republic of Ireland forking out £116m and exports up by 21%. Outside of Europe, cheese exports to China are growing annually by 19%, while the US is the top non-EU destination for UK cheese exports with the market valued at £50m.

The UK’s highest grossing export continues to be whisky, dominating the market at £4.8bn – with Scotch Whisky exports to China growing from £10m in the early noughties to £77m. This is followed by chocolate (£713m), and cheese (£675m).

Environment Secretary Theresa Villiers said: “As we leave the EU, we want people, both at home and abroad, to be lining up to buy British, and it is fantastic to see quintessentially British fare on Christmas tables the world over.

“This is testament to the hard work of our brilliant farmers and food producers and the crucial role they play in making Britain a leader for high-quality, high-welfare, seasonal produce.”

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