FOOD and drink businesses across Scotland have been awarded a share of £5 million to invest in infrastructure, purchase new equipment and upgrade or replace facilities.
In total 30 businesses will receive Food Processing, Marketing and Cooperation (FPMC) grants to support the food supply chain, safeguarding 1,386 jobs and creating 97 new ones.
The projects include improving storage facilities for oats, investing in new root vegetable processing equipment and purchasing new equipment to set up a Hebridean charcuterie business.
Announcing the funding, Fergus Ewing, rural economy secretary, said: “The coronavirus pandemic has underlined the importance of a strong and effective food supply chain and an increased consumer desire for locally produced food.
“This support will enable established producers and businesses across Scotland look to the future and capitalise on emerging marketing opportunities, as well as offer support to start-up businesses.
Stuart Allan of Melrose Farms near Banff, Aberdeenshire, said: “We are very grateful to have received this FPMC grant. It will provide great opportunities and potential within our field of work and will be used to build a new facility on our farm for dressing, drying and storing oats.
“It will also help support our future plans for the business to grow.”