M&S is championing British farming and pledging support for its family of farmers across the UK with the launch of a new six-week marketing campaign beginning on 28 April, alongside renewed commitment to source more of its products exclusively from British farms.
The campaign, which will span TV, social media and in-store, champions the continued efforts of British farmers and growers during the ongoing covid-19 crisis, highlighting its ongoing commitment to sourcing meat, farmed fish, poultry, dairy and fruit, veg and horticulture from farmers across the country.
On social media and online, M&S is using ‘farmer cam’ footage with interviews from farmers and growers across the country. On TV, a re-edited version of its Fresh Market Update TV series, which goes behind the scenes at M&S’s Select Farms across the UK producing beef, pork, salmon, raspberries, strawberries and tomatoes, will air following ITV’s 6.30pm news every Monday to Thursday.
Stuart Machin, managing director of M&S Food, said they want to ‘do their bit’ to support British farmers who continue to deliver fantastic quality fresh food: “That is why we are standing by our long-standing British sourcing commitments, introducing new initiatives to tackle the problems our agricultural sector faces, and – through our new campaign – reminding customers of the incredible food our nation’s farmers produce.“
M&S currently sources 100% of its beef, fresh pork, chicken, duck, turkey, goose and free range eggs from British farms and has committed to selling 100% British Lamb by June of this year. It also became the first retailer to source 100% British fresh strawberries and 100% British asparagus in early April, and its range will continue expanding as the British seasons commence.
The supermarket chain has also launched initiatives to support British farming, which includes a 100% British meat food box as part of its new online delivery range, which includes Aberdeen Angus Beef Burgers, Beef Casserole Steak and Rump Steak. It is also working with its long-standing tulip supplier Poplar Farm Nurseries to launch an online delivery solution to help close the gap in demand, and the retailer has this month introduced bedding plants into 200 of its Foodhalls and online.
In addition, in response to the closure of the hospitality industry, M&S is continuing to guarantee a leading and fair price for milk through its Milk Pledge and will always purchase the volume it has committed to regardless of customer demand, which West Sussex dairy farmer Tim Lock [pictured]has said has given him confidence during this difficult time.
Mr Lock said: “This has been one of the most difficult periods for many dairy farmers up and down the country, as our cows will still need to be milked despite changes in customer demand and restaurant and cafe closures. We are fortunate to be part of the M&S Milk Pool, and knowing that we’ll always receive a fair and stable milk price gives us the confidence that we will not only pull through this challenging time, but we can continue to invest in our businesses for the years to come.”