Connecting exporters from the Leeds City Region

£1.2bn of food and drink exports in Yorkshire in 2018

Yorkshire exported food and drink with a value of £1.2bn in 2018, a 3% increase on the previous year, according to the latest HMRC figures.

The fastest growing market for the region’s food and drink exporters last year was Qatar, with exports to the Gulf state rising by 123%. Exports to Australia also saw a significant jump, rising 24% on 2017.

Coffee, tea, cocoa and spices remained Yorkshire’s largest food and drink export, totalling £201.9m. The region’s fastest growing exports were sugar, sugar preparations and honey, increasing by 24% to £65.2m.

Food Minister David Rutley said: “From farm to fork, the UK’s food and drink industry is renowned for quality and high standards. Appetite for our produce is growing, with food and drink reaching a record £22.5bn last year.

“I am pleased to see businesses in Yorkshire taking advantage of the increasing demand for high quality British food and drink, with products such as tea and coffee boosting our reputation around the world.”

Mark Robson, head of the Yorkshire and Humber region at DIT, added: “The excellence of Yorkshire food and drink is increasingly being recognised, causing a surge in overseas demand for it. This is particularly relevant in markets like Qatar and Australia, making now the perfect time to export.

“It’s great to witness so many of our region’s businesses begin to export, or grow their international footprint by making a name for themselves overseas. Firms that export are more resilient, profitable and ultimately more successful, which is great news for the local economy.

“Overseas opportunities are out there for ambitious firms and we’ve got a team of dedicated International Trade Advisers to guide food and drink producers throughout the whole exporting process – from logistics and paperwork to due diligence on new markets. I’d urge businesses looking for support to get in touch.”