To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, how many staff in her Department are assigned specifically to promote and support exports of UK food and drink manufacturers; and if she will make a statement.
Food and drink manufacturers are supported through the breadth of the Department for International Trade’s (DIT) services, including the Export Support Service, the digital GREAT.gov.uk platform, the Export Academy and UK Export Finance. DIT has a team in the UK dedicated to supporting the food and drink sector. Resource levels are kept under regular review to ensure we can meet demand as interest and opportunities grow in new markets.
DIT also has more than 100 staff overseas, either on a full or part time basis, who are specifically supporting businesses in the agriculture, food, and drink sector. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and DIT recently announced that eight new specialist agricultural attachés would be placed in priority markets to tackle trade barriers, building on existing roles in China and the United Arab Emirates.