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Over 80% of businesses remain optimistic about the future growth of Scotland’s food and drink sector according to a survey conducted of business leaders.

Conducted as part of Scotland Food & Drink’s Industry Conference, the poll found that almost three quarters of the 350 delegates felt that consumer demand for local produce has increased over the last year.

More than half (54%) believed their biggest growth opportunity was within the wider UK market, and a quarter (25%) were looking to international markets for growth.

Iain Baxter, CEO at Scotland Food & Drink, said: “The poll results highlight the ambition that our businesses have, and their strategies to seize growth opportunities.

“It’s heartening to see such positivity among our membership and wider industry, particularly in the context of myriad challenges facing the sector.”