22 May 1998

BCP sets higher target for grain exports

OVER 3.5m tonnes of UK grain will be exported in food and drink within three years, according to a new grower-funded body.

British Cereal Products, part of Home-Grown Cereals Authority Marketing, hopes to boost the consumption of grain-based added value products, including meat, drink and cereal products, at home and abroad.

Its export target represents a near 10% increase over 1997 levels, and, combined with raw grain volumes, will push total grain exports to 9m tonnes, about 40% of UK output.

BCP, which takes over from HGCAs Food from Britain committee, will, like its predecessor, benefit from £1m of HGCA levy money. About 80% of that will help to fund new projects and promotions in the food and drink industry, the rest will cover staff and administration costs.

About £570,000 is earmarked for FFB and Meat and Livestock Commission projects. The former provides money to help firms establish products abroad, which included a £25,000 pay-out to French supermarket chain Monoprix to promote British sandwiches. The chain now sells more than 400,000 sandwiches a year.

Marks and Spencer also benefited from FFB cash to promote sandwich sales in France, and are now pushing into Germany.

MLCs mainly domestic projects include generic advertising like last years sausage promotion, which secured a £13m increase in sausage sales, equivalent to 10,000t of unmilled cereals.

The remaining £230,000 will be spent on HGCA Enterprise awards, which provide support to selected companies launching new projects.

The funds will attract a further £3m of industry cash, as well as unlocking FFB and government money, says director, Alan Almond.

BCP will work closely with the other half of HGCA Marketing, British Cereal Exports, and will have close links with existing and new FFB offices abroad. &#42

Grain equivalents

Weight of grain needed (per kg)

Bacon 1.67kg

Breakfast cereal 1.20kg

Shelled eggs 1.54kg

White bread 0.86kg

Cooked English breakfast* 0.50kg

*One serving.