News Article

Obstacles to Export Growth for Agrifood SMEs

In October 2011 SERIO was commissioned by the Department for Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) to investigate obstacles to export growth for agrifood small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

The government is committed to boosting exports in all sectors as a fundamental component of achieving strong and sustained growth in the economy. SERIO's research was specifically designed to inform Defra's Export Action Plan, 'Driving Export Growth in the Farming, Food and Drink Sector: a plan of action', which was published in January 2012. The research involved a rapid literature review followed by a telephone survey with 500 agrifood SMEs to identify exporting trends, and in-depth follow up interviews with a further 25 businesses. This important research identified that there is a lack of knowledge about exporting amongst agrifood SMEs and that raising awareness of information and support available to them could be an important stimulant to increasing export activity. Following these conclusions SERIO have recently been commissioned to build on the knowledge base and further explore options for information tools to better disseminate exporting information to agri-food SMEs, in order to help them effectively access the information they need to grow their export businesses.

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