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Scottish exporter targets big China deals
Published:  05 November, 2018
Chris Miller

Scotland’s leading exporter of craft beer and spirits JW Filshill International, has embarked on a two-week trade visit to China as it seeks to build on a series of export deals.

The trip by the Glasgow-based export consolidator will take in the Chinese cities of Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Beijing and Shanghai, where Scottish products will be showcased at a series of major food and drink events, such as the Food and Hotel China trade fair.

JW Filshill International, a subsidiary of JW Filshill, has spent the past four and a half years showcasing Scottish craft beer and spirits at trade shows internationally as well as establishing trading links with key importers and buyers.

Director Christopher Miller Miller said: “By attending trade shows, meeting buyers, building relationships with importers, and yes, judging at the Chinese Craft Beer Awards, we are showcasing Scotland’s craft drinks story to a sophisticated consumer who appreciates high quality products with a captivating provenance.

“Our networks with Scottish producers and our ability to consolidate them for export means we are perfectly positioned to support their ambitions to export to China and the Far East, where demand is really starting to take off. 

“Trips like this are a big investment for us, but it means we can give these Scottish products a brilliant show at key events. We know there is massive potential for Scottish craft products, including food, across China.

“We’ve not long sent one consolidated order of craft spirits (to Shanghai), and a second is already on its way. We’re extremely excited to now export there, thanks to the partnership with our importer Sprits Drinks International. Shanghai was a real breakthrough for us.”

He said the first export to Shanghai was worth about £20,000, adding that both the volume and value of future orders were expected to increase as market awareness and demand grew.

“This is why these trips are so important, so we can cement routes to market, and meet consumers and help them understand the products we’re shipping, so they too can share our passion for Scottish craft beer and spirits.” 

The latest trip follows previous visits to US, Japan, China, and the Middle East, which resulted in a £100,000 export deal of spirits from 20 Scottish craft distillers to Japan. 

Earlier this year JW Filshill International said it had generated revenues of £2m over the past three to four years, and that last year alone it had exported more than 1m bottles of craft beer.