Sainsbury pledges to buy 100% British fresh pork

By Mike Stones

- Last updated on GMT

From July 10, all Sainsbury's fresh pork will be sourced from British farms, pledged the retailer
From July 10, all Sainsbury's fresh pork will be sourced from British farms, pledged the retailer

Related tags: Meat, Pork, Sainsbury

Sainsbury has pledged to buy 100% British pork, in a move that will double its fresh pork purchases measured by weight.

The retailer is rolling out the British-only fresh pork initiative from Wednesday July 3 and expected to complete it by July 10.

By that date, all Sainsbury’s fresh pork – including loins, chops and joints – across its basics, by Sainsbury’s and Taste the Difference will sourced from Britain.

The increase of British pigs to meet the demand across by Sainsbury’s and basics range will increase by 70%, it predicted.

While all the supermarket’s ham and sausages are British, its bacon and gammon continued to be British, Dutch or Danish.

‘The confidence to invest’

Sainsbury said the pledge would give pig farmers the confidence to invest in their future and reduces reliance on pork from the EU including Dutch and Danish products. “Sainsbury’s has built its investment as part of its commitment to double the amount of British food it sells by 2020 and responded to customers increasing interest in home grown food,”​ it said in a statement.

Commenting on the announcement, farming minister David Heath said: “British pork has a reputation across the world for its high welfare standards, quality and taste. Choosing British meat and dairy is a positive way to support British farming and enjoy locally sourced food.”

Sue Lockhart, the retailer’s head of agriculture, said sourcing food closer to home and developing  stronger links with farmers was a key part of Sainsbury’s strategy to lead on fresh food. “Our customers trust us to source the very best fresh food in a sustainable way and we’re pleased to announce fresh pork as our latest progress,” ​said Lockhart.

“This summer customers will see more British food than ever before from beef burgers through to blueberries from Scotland.”

‘Guaranteed order with a major retailer’

Meryl Ward, member of the Pork Development Group, welcomed the news during such a challenging year. “The commitment will give farmers confidence to invest in their business as they have a guaranteed order with a major retailer. Earlier this year Sainsbury’s supported its Pork Development Group members with a price premium because of the rising cost in fee. It’s responsive moves like this that farmers need for a sustainable future.”

Ward was recently awarded an MBE for her work on pig welfare in the Queen's Birthday Honours List​.

All Sainsbury’s fresh pork sold in Northern Ireland stores is 100% Northern Irish pork.

Meanwhile, all its fresh chicken is British and has been for more than 10 years.

In addition, from July 3, all its breaded and roast chicken and frozen whole bird and portions will be British.

The British-only policy also applied to the chicken in its fresh ready meals, pies, pizza topping, quiches and soups – with the exception of continental meats.

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