First Minister Nicola Sturgeon used her keynote speech at the centenary SGF Conference to announce an extension of the Food-to-Go fund, which will receive an additional £300,000 in 2019 to help retailers install food-to-go stations in their stores.
New criteria aligned to the matched funding initiative means that successful applicants will now also have to undertake a commitment to reduce food and packaging waste.
Sturgeon said: “A diverse and successful convenience store sector is vital in serving communities throughout Scotland. Last year’s Food-to-Go fund was very effective in supporting small retailers the length and breadth of the country to entice customers into their stores and generate a new income stream for grocers.
“This new funding will build on that, helping grocers to provide people with access to good quality, locally sourced and healthy food as well as providing an important focus on waste reduction.”
The First Minister also paid tribute to the Federation, praising its “invaluable contribution” to the economy and society over the last 100 years. She also pledged that the Scottish Government would continue to work in partnership with retailers and listen to their concerns over forthcoming legislation that will restrict the promotion of foods high in fat, salt and sugar.
Her speech came near the end of the two-day event held at the Crowne Plaza in Glasgow, which saw a packed audience of retailers, wholesalers and suppliers listen to a number of high-profile industry figures speak on the theme of the “dawn of a new era”.