Scotland has a vibrant food and drink manufacturing industry - companies in the sector range from thriving small businesses through to major global brands. These companies provide their local communities with a wide variety of careers and are a vital part of the Scottish economy.

Scotland punches well above it's weight for a small nation. FDF's national and regional report 2024 shows that in Scotland food and drink manufacturing contributes:

  • 14.6% of total UK food and drink manufacturing GVA
  • 10.8% of the UK’s food and drink manufacturing turnover
  • 31.3% of total UK food and drink exports

Our statistics at a glance below highlight the economic importance of the Scottish food and drink manufacturing industry.


  • We employ 44,000 people, 26% of the Scottish manufacturing workforce.
  • Our gross value added to the economy is £3.9 billion, 27% of Scottish manufacturing value added.
  • We have 1,295 food and drink manufacturing businesses.
  • Our industry has a turnover of £10.7 billion, accounting for 29% of total Scottish manufacturing.
  • In 2023 food and drink exports decreased by 6.8% to £7.6 billion.
  • 96% of our businesses are SMEs.
  • We are Scotland’s largest manufacturing sector, accounting for 29% of total manufacturing turnover.
  • Scottish food and drink manufacturing will need 7,000 new recruits by 2033.
  • Food and drink manufacturing accounts for almost 70% of Scotland’s full supply chain turnover and 36% of the number of people it employs.