Follow Co-op Lead Says UFU

Ulster Farmers’ Union President Barclay Bell has said the Co-op group has shown up other retailers by committing to selling 100 per cent UK bacon and lamb.

The Co-op as a retailer has decided to drop both Danish bacon and New Zealand lamb after research showed imports have doubled over the past twenty years.

He said: “Buying UK fresh meat all year round is a very welcome step.  The Co-op has grabbed the lead over other retailers, with this commitment to back home production.  The scale of meat imports has long been a concern and the Co-op deserves credit for supporting UK farms.”

The UFU says this decision is a challenge to other retailers.  It says the Co-op is recognising the importance of food security and of having short, fully traceable supply chains.  Mr Bell added: “This approach delivers a high standard of locally produced food.  I believe this is what consumers want to buy, and it is a challenge farmers want to meet.  Backing local produce also has positive knock-on effects for the economy, the environment and society.  I would urge all retailers and food service companies to step up to the mark and follow the Co-ops, lead”.