Exports case study: FAO27
Winner of FDF’s Exporter of the Year award 2014, FAO27 is the sales export department for a handful of carefully selected Scottish seafood processors and boats, with product range including shellfish, fish and salmon.
Intersea Food Scotland Ltd, was founded in 2009 to respond to the need of Scottish family businesses in terms of export development. In 2013 the company rebranded to become FAO27, acknowledging the importance of quality and traceability of its products from within the Food and Agriculture Organisation sector of the North Sea.
Based both in the Highlands of Scotland and in France, FAO27 takes a collaborative approach with its partners by implementing a real supply chain business development strategy.
The company’s main exports markets include France, Italy, Belgium, Portugal and Luxembourg. Overall sales (100% export) grew by over 100% in the last financial year Nov 2012 to Oct 2013.
FAO27 has a strong customer base in wholesale, retail, fishmonger and restaurant sectors and the flagship product is Scottish Langoustines, which performs well across all main exports markets. In 2012, Wester Ross Salmon was introduced to the French market and now represents around 7% of total sales and continues to grow.
At the centre of FAO27’s development sits its partners’ ambitions, goals and skills. The export strategy is focused on increasing margin and a number of solutions have been implemented to achieve this: developing relationships further down the supply chain, buying forward currencies, daily sales/products strategy review and constant communication with partners.
By working with its customers, the company has also been able to identify opportunities for diversification, such as producing coley and cod loins for the French and Belgian markets.
Anne Moseley, Business Development Director said: “Quality is core to everything we do and our vision is for the FAO27 label to be synonymous with the highest quality. Our strategy for the future will be focussed on increasing margins for partners through market consolidation, new market and account development, as well as new product development.
“We have learnt that communication & trust is vital, with our partners and our customers. By developing open & honest relationships our business is ready to grow & expand into new and exciting markets.”