23 June 2011

Stevenson Hails Scottish Government Funding For Portsoy Boat Festival

Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed the announcement that the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival at Portsoy is set to receive Scottish Government funding as part of a £1.1 million funding boost for Scotland’s food and drink industry. The Scottish Government’s contribution will be used to support businesses attending food and cultural events, including the Portsoy Boat Festival.

The value of Scotland’s food and drink products has increased by 32% or £453 million since the SNP came to power in 2007, and the value of the sector’s exports outside the UK has increased by 26% to a record £4.5 billion over the same period. The sector employs 5% of the Scottish workforce and has been made a priority under the SNP Government with the publication of Scotland’s first ever food and drink strategy.

Commenting, Mr Stevenson said:

“This is a welcome boost to the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival in Portsoy and everyone who has been involved in making it such an incredible success, and I pay particular tribute to Roger Goodyear and his team in this regard.

“The chance to sample high quality food has been a key part of the festival’s success in recent years and anything that helps to support that side of the event is good news.

“The Portsoy Boat Festival has become a landmark event for the area and is a key fixture in many people in Banffshire & Buchan Coast’s calendars. I will be attending it again myself this year and like so many people I am looking forward to it immensely.

“The Scottish Government has ambitious plans to grow the food and drink sector even further, and a key part of that has to be supporting events such as this which give people the chance to sample some of the high quality produce Scotland has to offer. I am sure that this funding will help to make the Traditional Boat Festival a continued success both this year and in years to come.”

Mr Stevenson and Banff & Buchan MP Eilidh Whiteford will be attending the Scottish Traditional Boat Festival on Sunday 3 July and will also be holding surgeries for constituents at the SNP Stand.

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