Following reports that prime beef stocks in some of the country’s biggest retailers, including Sainsbury’s, ASDA and Tesco, are being dominated by Irish products during Great British Beef Week, NFU president Minette Batters has called the lack of support from some retailers ‘inexcusable’.
In her statement, she points out that the sudden closure of restaurants due to coronavirus and the wider impact on the food service sector has seen prime cuts of British beef are being held in storage with nowhere to go, and as these cuts are the highest quality and most valuable, farmers are in desperate need of a market.
She said: “At a time when retailers should be supporting British farmers more than ever and promoting these quality cuts of British beef, it is indefensible that customers who want to support British farmers by buying British food are only finding Irish cuts on shelves in some stores.
“Sainsbury’s has a policy that it will source 75% British beef. There is no reason whatsoever that this sourcing policy should not be demonstrated in all their stores.
“This week is about celebrating and promoting the incredible beef we have here in Britain. This is not what we are seeing from some of our retailers and both farmers and the public are demanding to know why.”