Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 14°C

ESTD 1874 Search

UK: NFU chiefs upset by Morrisons move

08:49 28 November 2012

Jimmy Butler with BPEX Red Tractor at Morrisons

Jimmy Butler with BPEX Red Tractor at Morrisons

submitted

A decision by Morrisons to move from stocking 100pc fresh British poultry meat was “extremely disappointing,” said the National Farmers’ Union.

shares

It comes just days after East Anglian pig farmers praised the retailer for supporting hard-pressed and loss-making producers. A national roadshow, which kicked off at the supermarket’s Riverside store in Norwich before moving to Ipswich Morrisons, saw pig farmers handing out hundreds of free bacon rolls.

Jimmy Butler, who runs 2,000 sows to produce the Blythburgh Free Range Pork, said it was a great opportunity to thank shoppers for staying loyal to Red Tractor pork and bacon. “We wanted to say thanks to our customers for supporting producers of Red Tractor bacon and pork,” he added.

He was joined by volunteers from Ladies in Pigs, including Sophie Hope and Janet Allen, who cooked sausages and bacon to hand out to shoppers.

But the latest move by Morrisons to source cut-price poultry from Europe was described by one leading producer as a “kick in the teeth” for home producers.

“We’ve been encouraged to invest at some extra cost in newer welfare-friendly systems. I’m really surprised because until just a few days ago Morrisons were 100pc supporters of red tractor chicken,” said an East Anglian supplier.

In addition, all producers will be meeting the requirements of the Red Tractor scheme, which will not be required by Morrisons for imported meat, said a NFU spokesman.

Duncan Priestner, who is the NFU’s poultry board chairman, said: “We understand the difficulties retailers are faced with in a competitive market where consumers are demanding a variety of price levels to suit their needs, but unfortunately that comes at the cost of animal welfare standards and British poultry meat.

“British poultry producers have committed and invested in their businesses in order to supply Morrisons so it is extremely disappointing that Morrisons has made this decision.

“It means fresh British chicken will now be displaced by cheaper produce from EU countries that will not have to meet the same welfare standards and it is a blow for the industry.

“Morrisons has always been a keen supporter of British farming and we want this to continue. We hope this is a short-term move that Morrisons will review and reverse at the earliest opportunity,” he added.

Mr Butler thanked Morrisons for supporting the industry by stocking Red Tractor pork and bacon products. While producers have seen feed prices for their pigs soar as a result of droughts around the world, many were losing as much as £12 on every animal,

But an overwhelming majority of consumers have said they would pay a little extra to buy pigs produced in higher-welfare systems. It is the reason that producers have been touring the country to say thanks, said Mr Butler.

shares

0 comments

Colchester General Hospital

A new permanent chief executive has been appointed to lead the trust running Colchester’s hospitals.

The Red Arrows thrill the crowds at the Clacton Air Show.

A record 220,000 people attended the Clacton Airshow over the last two days – leaving organisers content that they had made the right decision to host the event so soon after recent tragic events.

One lane of the A12 has been closed because of a multi-vehicle collision.

Chelmsford Crown Court

A Lakenheath man convicted of sexual abuse of boys in Essex has been sentenced to eight years in prison.

The Woodbridge Heritage Group are campaigning against the proposed relocation of

For 35 years it has been rooted to the same spot in a Suffolk town – representing a defiant stand against an unyielding adversary.

An efit has been released by police after an attempted robbery

Police want to trace two men in connection with an attempted robbery in Bury St Edmunds.

An efit has been released by police after a woman was assualted

An Efit image has been released by police after a woman was assaulted in Ipswich

More needs to be done to keep cyclists safe in Ipswich

More action is needed to making cycling in Ipswich safe and accessible.

Police were called to the scene

Police are urging residents not to leave valuable items in their cars and make sure outbuildings are secure following a spate of thefts from vehicles and garages this week.

Two-vehicle crash on the B1119 between Framlingham and Saxmundham

A two-car crash has blocked part of the B1119 in Framlingham, at the crossroads of the main roads to Cransford and Glemham.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages