Highland cattle© Rex

Branded Scotch beef and lamb will go on sale at more than 1,300 retail outlets in Sweden in the coming months.

The move is result of a new partnership between Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and Swedish grocery giant ICA.

It follows successful sales of the PGI (protected geographical indication) status products at selected stores in Stockholm since 2011.

See also: How PGI status could benefit English beef and lamb producers

QMS also sponsored a range of in-store sampling activities aimed at showcasing the meat to Swedish consumers, and the deal to extend the distribution was clinched following a visit by ICA representatives to Scotland last month to meet farmers and processors.  

 Laurent Vernet, QMS head of marketing, said Swedish consumers had become more and more discerning and wanted quality red meat with a high welfare status.

“ICA has always been focused on offering the best quality at the best price to their customers,” he added.

“By choosing Scotch beef PGI, Swedish consumers can be confident they are choosing the best product out there in terms of quality, taste and provenance.

“Along with Scotch lamb, Scotch beef is an everyday premium product that can be enjoyed as part of a healthy, balanced diet.”

Joakim Skold Ostling, ICA’s chief protein buyer, was a member of the delegation to Scotland.

He said: “We are delighted to offer Scotch beef PGI and Scotch lamb PGI for sale in our stores across Sweden.

“We pride ourselves on selecting the very highest-quality produce to offer our customers. Having met with representatives from QMS, as well as farmers and processors across Scotland, we are excited to be able to offer Scotch beef and Scotch lamb through our 1,300 outlets.”

The news comes at the start of a new Scotch beef campaign in the UK, which aims to clearly differentiate Scotch beef.

The nine-week QMS campaign, which launched on 2 February, has the strapline “There’s beef, there’s Scottish beef, then there’s Scotch beef”.

It will showcase Scotch beef and the flavour, provenance, traceability and integrity that underpin the brand’s PGI status.