Total UK food and non-alcoholic drink exports grew by 2.5% to £6.1 billion in the first half of 2013, according to figures from the Food & Drink Federation.
Although 2013 began slowly with food and non-alcoholic drinks exports down by 3.4% in Q1, this was offset by strong Q2 growth (+9%) – exports in June alone were up over 13%.
Exports to the EU27 showed positive signs (+1%) though this was eclipsed by continued high growth to non-EU markets, up 7.5%. China leapt up ten places to enter the top 10 markets for food and drink companies, a climb largely accounted for by a boom in British pork exports (+591%).
Value added foods were up in both EU (+4.9%) and non-EU markets (+8.2%), and sweet biscuits performed particularly strongly (+14.2%). Against a difficult backdrop with cumulative UK exports down by 3.3%, food and non-alcoholic drink exports have performed solidly, showing a 2.5% increase compared to the same period last year.