Consumers back British pork despite cheaper European imports

By Linda Groves

- Last updated on GMT

The NPA said it was surprised by the strength of consumer confidence in pork, bacon, sausages and ham
The NPA said it was surprised by the strength of consumer confidence in pork, bacon, sausages and ham

Related tags Somerfield Pork

More than four fifths of consumers still want supermarkets to stock a high level of British pork despite a glut of cheaper European imports, according to research.

Only a fifth wanted them to sell more of the cheaper European pork to keep prices down, a YouGov survey published by the National Pig Association (NPA) indicates.

The price of pork has fallen on the continent since Russia imposed an embargo on EU meat last August in retaliation for its sanctions over Ukraine.

Reduce risk of another ‘horsegate’

Two-thirds of consumers believed importing more European pork not produced under food assurance schemes like Red Tractor could increase the risk of another horsegate style scandal.

Consumers have always been loyal to British pig farmers, particularly after horsegate, but even we have been surprised by this significant vote of confidence in the quality of our pork, bacon, sausages and ham​,” said NPA chairman Richard Longthorp, who farms in East Yorkshire.

“This research suggests supermarkets are delighting shoppers by sticking to their horsegate promises to sell more British meat, despite the current provocation of a mountain of cheap meat piling up in continental cold stores.”

NPA chief executive Dr Zoe Davies added: “This research shows shoppers are in no doubt that supermarket commitments following horsegate to source more British meat have played an important role in restoring confidence in the meat on supermarket shelves​.”

100% committed to British pork

NPA also praised Waitrose, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Sainsbury, Budgens, the Co-operative Group, Aldi and Lidl, the retailers its latest Porkwatch survey identified as committed to selling 100% British pork.

A Waitrose spokesperson confirmed this saying: “All Waitrose fresh pork, including sausages, bacon and ham, is British with the exception of cured continental meats and we are committed to backing British​.”

She added that all Waitrose’s fresh pork, bacon, sausages and ham is reared by a select group of British farmers, mainly in East Anglia and southern England, who it knows and trusts.

Related topics Meat, poultry & seafood

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