To promote British food & drink culture, and to showcase the best of British food & drink products in Taiwan, the British Trade & Culture Office (BTCO) launched the “GREAT Taste of Britain” campaign in Taipei today.
Food & drink is the largest manufacturing sector in the UK, with a turnover of £76 billion, and has been one of the most resilient industries even during the recession. The UK’s food & drink industry is perhaps surprisingly high tech, with a strong record of innovation. The UK pioneered frozen food, ready meals and instant coffee, and is now at the forefront of developing “functional food”- products that provide health benefits. The industry continues to invest over £1 billion a year in research and development, resulting in about 10,000 new products being introduced to the market every year. The UK is particularly competitive in added-value, branded and skill-intensive products, and in areas like high-tech packaging, health and convenience foods, and functional foods.
Food produced in the UK is among the safest and most hygienic in the world. An efficient and transparent regulatory system serves to safeguard quality and safety. Quality, safety, health and convenience, and the most sophisticated supply chains in the world have meant consumer expenditure on food, drink and catering in the UK has kept rising in recent years. Total food & drink exports from the UK (including alcoholic drinks) have also experienced growth over the last six years, showing a strong year-on-year increase of 3.7% in 2013 at £19.4 billion.
The beer, cider and spirits industry have a long heritage in the UK. Even William Shakespeare wrote in A Winter’s Tale: “for a quart of ale is a dish for a king”. The UK exported 1.3 billion bottles of Scotch whisky in 2013. For Taiwan specifically, with the island’s continuing enjoyment of premium single malt Scotch, Taiwan is the world’s seventh largest market by value for Scotch whisky overall, and the third largest for single malt, despite a population of only 23 million. The UK is also one of the world’s leading cider producers.
Seafood is another growing area of quality food produced in the UK. Scotland is the third largest salmon producer in the world and Scottish salmon was named “best farmed salmon on the world” in a poll of international seafood buyers during 2011. Scottish farmed salmon was the first non-French food to receive the highly-prized Label Rouge designation.
UK food & drink has more to offer than quality, safety, health and convenience! The newly published Michelin guide “Great Britain & Ireland 2015” for high quality and gourmet restaurants lists a total of 167 Michelin-awarded restaurants in the UK: four three stars; 21 with two stars and 142 with one. The UK has world-renowned chefs, including Jamie Oliver, Gary Rhodes and Gordon Ramsay, who not only work to change people’s perception of British food, but also to inspire the younger generation of chefs to go further in their creativity and innovative skills.
Mr Chris Wood, Director of the British Trade & Cultural Office, says at the launch press conference: “In Taiwan, consumer expenditure on food, drink and catering has continued to rise in recent years. The concern for healthy eating will also be a major driver for quality products where UK food and drink come with the assurance of authenticity and safety. So now we want to promote and showcase even more British food & drink in Taiwan!
Launched in 2012 (in the year of the Diamond Jubilee, the Olympics and the Paralympics), the GREAT Britain promotion is the British Government’s most ambitious international marketing campaign ever: it showcases the very best of what Britain has to offer in order to encourage the world to visit, study in and do business with the UK. The campaign is currently active in over 144 markets. And, with local partners, this month we are running the GREAT Taste of Britain campaign around Taiwan!”
The GREAT Taste of Britain campaign in Taiwan covers various aspects of UK Food & Drink sector, including –
Food is GREAT Britain: a 2-week in-store promotion from now on until 29 October at 8 JASONS market places island-wide with 30 UK Brands (including Waitrose series) for more than 100 items of breakfast cereals, dairy products, cooking aids, tea, jam and confectionary, beer and whisky, including some Royal Warrant products and Fair Trade products. Visit JASONS Market Place Taipei 101 Branch with the purchase of British products over NT$1000, the first 100 customers will get a NT$100-valued Food is GREAT Britain Easy Card.
Pubs are GREAT Britain: a one-week (17-23 October) British whisky, beer & spirits promotion at Cheers in the Grand Hyatt. A total of 17 British spirits brands with 19 items will be promoted, including both single malt and blended Scotch Whisky, from beer to cider and gin. Most of the spirits are the first time served at Cheers in the Grand Hyatt.
Culture is GREAT Britain: a month-long (until 11 November) British afternoon tea promotion with Wedgwood Tea Room at 9F of SOGO Fuxing Department Store in Taipei, offering a very British style tea set for two people at NT$800. You should not miss this opportunity to indulge yourself in the elegant experience of British High Tea!
Education is GREAT Britain: as part of the annual European Education Fair (EEF) in Taiwan from 17 -19 October, 18 UK institutions will be presenting culinary and hospitality education in the UK – from professional hotel management to vocational training courses. Visit the UK pavilion at the EEF in Taipei and take a photo to upload to your own facebook page, the first 30 visitors on the day will receive a NT$100-valued GREAT Britain Easy Card.
Creativity is GREAT Britain: BTCO is cooperating with TLC Channel in Taiwan to produce one episode on TLC’s brand new Season of “Kitchen Cook-off” (which premieres at 7:00 pm, Saturday 8 November) featuring British gourmet flavours from the two Taiwanese chefs – Joel & Soac! The episode is scheduled to be on air later in December.
Furthermore, you can always get online to BTCO’s official FACEBOOK page at for all the updates on the GREAT Taste of Britain campaign and win some interesting prizes with the GREAT Britain branding! Some are even exclusively from the British Trade and Cultural Office! Enjoy the GREAT Taste of Britain in October!!