Recipe for Success: Scotland's national food and drink policy, becoming a Good Food Nation

Strategy document setting out our proposed national food and drink policy up until 2025.

2. Executive Summary: becoming a Good Food Nation

Recipe for Success, Scotland’s first ever National Food and Drink Policy, was ground breaking when it was launched in 2009.

There has been huge progress in the sector ever since, for example:

  • Growth in turnover of 14.4% between 2008 and 2011, the strongest growth of all growth sectors in Scotland. Targets on turnover and exports have been exceeded years early, with a 51% growth between 2007 and 2013 in the value of food and drink exports.
  • A 32% rise between 2007 and 2013 in retail sales of Scottish food and drink brands in Great Britain.
  • A step change in collaborative working both within the sector and between industry and the public sector.
  • An explosion in the local food movement with 150 new local food initiatives.
  • Food education initiatives evolving, the Food for Thought Education Fund reaching 333 schools and an increase in those taking school meals.
  • Significant strides in relation to diet, including reformulation of products.

Nevertheless, significant challenges remain. These include:

  • Amongst children and adults some of the highest levels of diet-related poor health in the world. Almost two thirds of adults are overweight in Scotland.
  • Deep-seated attitudes to food leading to poor habits and low expectations.
  • Serious threats to global food security due, in part, to population growth rates and climate change.
  • Disengagement from where food comes from.
  • A lack of diversity in exports and supply chains which lack resilience.

This document reaffirms the Scottish Government’s commitment to promoting the sustainable economic growth of the food and drink industry.

But it also articulates a new aspiration, that Scotland should become a Good Food Nation, a Land of Food and Drink not only in what we as a nation produce but also in what we buy, serve and eat. The Scottish Government wants food to be a key part of what makes the people of Scotland proud of their country – food which is both tasty to eat and nutritious, fresh and environmentally sustainable.

This is a big undertaking. It will not happen overnight. This document sets out:

  • A proposed 2025 vision for what we, as a country, should be aiming to achieve.
  • Plans for a Food Commission and local champions to drive change.
  • Proposed priority areas such as food in the public sector, children’s food and local food.
  • A commitment to a variety of approaches.


For Scotland to be a Good Food Nation there must be wholehearted participation from people in all walks of life, from throughout the country. This document asks you to play your part by:

  • giving us your views on the propositions made; and
  • deciding what it is that you, can contribute to take us further on the journey towards being a Good Food Nation.



Telephone: 0300 244 9802

Scottish Government
Food, Drink and Rural Communities
B1 Spur
Saughton House
Broomhouse Drive
EH11 3XD

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