NFU urges retailers to set out clear commitments to sourcing British lamb

NFU urges retailers to set out clear commitments to sourcing British lamb

The NFU has urged all major retailers to strengthen their commitments to sourcing peak season British lamb, sending letters Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Marks & Spencer, Waitrose, the Co-operative, Aldi, Brakes, Sodexo, Whitbread, Lidl and Compass.

Charles Sercombe

NFU livestock chairman Charles Sercombe has praised Brakes and the Cooperative for acting on the NFU’s calls.

The NFU has asked retailers for:

  • Transparency and a commitment to deliver on British lamb sourcing, specifically clarity on when retailers season starts and finishes.
  • Direct contracts and improved communication with producers to offer stability and confidence, and give the potential to work towards buying British all year round.
  • An outline of plans showing how they plan to develop new products to entice consumers to buy British lamb and enable lamb carcasses to be balanced more easily.
  • Ensure that labelling is clear on British lamb and that the Red Tractor logo is used prominently.

Already the Co-operative and Brakes have acted, setting out their commitments to sourcing British lamb. Brakes confirmed to the NFU that all of its fresh and frozen lamb will be British Red Tractor assured by the end of July while the Co-operative is bringing forward the season for its ‘truly irresistible’ British lamb supply.

NFU livestock board chairman Charles Sercombe said: “The real win is in the foodservice industry, with leaders at Brakes, who should be praised for their efforts in being clear about their sourcing commitments.  It means their customers such as schools, pubs, restaurants, hotels and care homes, who serve up millions of meals every year, will be using tender, delicious, quality British lamb throughout the year.

“I’m also delighted that the Co-operative has listened to our concerns about this year’s early production and brought forward the season for its ‘truly irresistible’ British lamb supply by two weeks.”

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