Executive strategy supports alcohol

27 June, 2008

Alcohol is to feature strongly in Scotland's new National Food & Drink Policy, according to cabinet minister Richard Lochhead.

The Scottish

Executive believes the policy is essential to promote

the country's food and drink products and

to encourage

their healthier consumption .

"This policy will clearly work alongside our alcohol misuse strategy to promote more responsible attitudes to alcohol while contributing towards the growth of Scotland's food and drink industry ," said Lochhead, who is responsible for rural affairs and the environment.

Paul McLaughlin, chief executive of Scotland Food & Drink, welcomed the news and highlighted "the importance that water, juices, dairy and alcohol have to the wider economy".

He added: "Whisky is worthy of particular mention given its scale, economic value and iconic status . We have stated our aim: to build a reputation for Scotland as 'A Land of Food and Drink' and the

government's actions

move us closer to achieving this vision."

The Scotch Whisky Association was also enthusiastic. Chief executive Gavin Hewitt said: "Scottish government commitment to a joined-up approach to food and drink issues is very welcome ."

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