FOOD and drink businesses from across Yorkshire and the Humber sought out new export customers at the Anuga food and drink fair in Cologne, Germany.

The trade show, which marks its 100th anniversary this year, hosts more than 7,400 exhibitors from more than 100 countries, and welcomes 165,000 trade visitors from around the world.

The businesses have so far been supported on their exporting journey by the Food is Great campaign – a cross-departmental initiative between the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Department for International Trade (DIT) – to showcase UK food and drink overseas and help more businesses export.

The producers attending from Yorkshire and the Humber, included Heck Food, from Bedale, North Yorkshire, who exhibited at the show alongside more than 100 UK businesses in a dedicated UK pavilion with support from DIT International Trade Advisers (ITAs).

Food Minister Zac Goldsmith said: “It is fantastic to see our food and drink businesses promoting their world-famous produce and forging new links with emerging markets.

“Anuga is an excellent opportunity to showcase the food and drink that Yorkshire and the Humber is renowned for, and builds on the continued success of British businesses and our Food is GREAT campaign.”

Minister for Investment at the Department for International Trade, Graham Stuart said: “At £22.5 billion, UK food and drink overseas sales are at record levels thanks to the depth, quality, safety and welfare standards of our produce.

“The international appetite for British food and drink quality and brands has never been higher and the potential for growth is enormous. With DIT’s help I hope to see more and more British firms making the leap into new markets.”

The Anuga trade show followed a special pre-event networking opportunity held at The Belfry on October 3 and 4 in Sutton Coldfield, more than 20 food and drink businesses from Yorkshire and the Humber met with 50 overseas buyers. Producers had the opportunity to pick and choose which buyers they wanted to meet and establish potential partnerships with.

The latest statistics show that food and drink exports from Yorkshire and the Humber rose to £1.21 billion in the year to June 2019, up 2.4% on the previous 12 months.