Eight seafood producers and a national trade body are flying the flag for Scotland at a major industry showcase in Japan this week.
The Scottish contingent is in Tokyo for Japan Seafood Expo 2018, which starts tomorrow and runs until Friday.
It will be attended by a host of important international buyers from trading companies, wholesalers, distributors, retailers and the restaurant trade among an estimated 35,000 visitors.
Hebridean Smokehouse; Denholm Seafoods; Marine Harvest Scotland; Lunar; the Scottish Salmon Company; The Crab Company Scotland; Dawnfresh and Northbay Pelagic are all hoping to pick up new business.
The Scottish Fishermen’s Organisation is also there to promote the rich diversity of Scottish seafood, international exports of which rocketed by 23% to £944 million last year.
Scottish fish and seafood exports to Japan are estimated to have grown by 24% to £4.6m during the past two years.
In terms of the proportion of the country’s total catch represented, this year’s Scottish delegation to the annual Japan Seafood Expo is the largest yet.
The trade mission is part of an export support programme organised by trade organisation Seafood Scotland in partnership with Scottish Development International.
Natalie Bell, trade marketing manager for Europe, Middle East and Asia, Seafood Scotland, said: “Its famously strong fish-eating culture and a market that demands increasing levels of quality, traceability and sustainability, makes Japan an ideal match for Scottish seafood. Where Japan leads, the rest of Asia generally follows. As the cultural and foodie trend-setter for the region, buy-in from Japan is crucial for Scottish fishermen and producers. Japan Seafood Expo represents a critical opportunity for Scottish company representatives, who will do solid deals over tastings and dinners, contributing to a real boost for the Scottish industry.”
The Scottish contingent is also hosting a seafood reception at the British Embassy in Tokyo, with a view to forming ties with Asian buyers and chefs.