The UK food and drink industry is the envy of the world. Our brands and products are loved by shoppers and consumers and we are here to serve them.

As the UK’s largest manufacturing sector, worth over £28 billion to the economy, we employ over 430,000 people with a footprint in every constituency. As well as creating job opportunities and wealth for the nation, food and drink is a strategic national asset.

The FDF publishes reports across a wide range of policy areas highlighting the sector's achievements and shining a spotlight on its performance.

Report: Food and Drink Industry Interim Report 2020

31 August 2020

Highlighting the growth opportunities and challenges for the food and drink sector for 2020.

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Updates & milestones

Food and Drink Interim Industry Report 2020


FDF and Santander have published the new Food and Drink Interim Industry Report 2020, highlighting the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the sector. Following the closure of the hospitality sector in Q2, manufacturers faced reduced demand leading to weak business confidence. The pandemic also impacted foreign markets and exports performance, with exports falling by 14.6% from January to May on the previous year, and all the top 10 products exports declining.

Despite the uncertain environment, the report highlights future export market opportunities for manufacturers, including the UAE and wider Gulf region, China, the US and Canada. The UAE and wider Gulf region have been experiencing considerable growth in the past years, the other markets are already established key markets for UK food and drink exports.

Food and Drink Industry Report 2020


The Food and Drink Industry Report 2020 looks in particular at exports and the developing markets of China, India Japan, UAE and USA, all of which have seen considerable year-on-year growth. Santander's export team provides analysis of the potential and challenges around each territory together with essential information for any company considering trading with these harder to reach markets.

The report highlights other important issues for the industry including increasing automation, sustainable packaging and diet and health are also highlighted in the report as areas where industry is committed to making a difference.