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Sheep Farmers Seek Supermarket Support

Two of the nation’s largest supermarkets continue to give significant shelf space over to imported lamb despite the Scottish lamb season being at its peak.

NFU Scotland members have continued to find a worrying and disappointing level of imported New Zealand and Australian lamb on the shelves of both Asda and Tesco stores.

These findings come one week into a national campaign to promote Specially Selected Scotch Lamb. Quality Meat Scotland’s “Get Behind the Label” promotion launched on 3 October and will run for a month.

The Union previously looked at the origin of lamb on supermarket shelves in May and July of this year. 

NFU Scotland President Nigel Miller said:
“Tesco and Asda are both hugely important supporters of Scotch lamb and we appreciate that, at certain times of the year, a level of imported product may be required to ensure a full offering of lamb is presented to their customers.

“However, this is peak season for Scottish and UK lamb, and there is a perfectly reasonable expectation from Scottish sheep farmers that home-produced product should be filling the full range of fresh lamb being offered.

“Scottish lamb is more competitively priced than it has been for a year and it is guaranteed fresh and tasty.  It is ideally placed to meet all of a retailer’s requirements whether it is for value, special offer, standard or premium ranges.

“Other stores – particularly Morrisons and Sainsburys – show that home-produced lamb can fill the available shelf space without the need for imports and even smaller retailers – Co-op, Aldi and Lidl – have Scottish or UK lamb filling their limited offer of fresh lamb.

“The message to Asda and Tesco is clear. This is the time of year when Scotch lamb is at its tastiest and supplies are plentiful.  While there is lots of Scottish and UK lamb already on their shelves, we need some clear explanations from them as to why they are still carrying so much imported out-of-season lamb alongside prime home produced product.”

NOTES TO EDITORS

  • NFU Scotland visited the Asda store at Galashiels and Tesco stores at Galashiels, Corstorphine and Dalkeith.  The Union also visited Co-op, Aldi and Lidl stores in the area where the lamb offering was very small but all was found to be Scottish or UK.
  • Details on the Quality Meat Scotland lamb campaign can be found at: http://bit.ly/WQIJqk

Ends

Contact Bob Carruth on 0131 472 4006

Date Published:

News Article No.: 120/12


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