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Report: Meat in the Hands of Supermarket Giants

by 5m Editor
27 March 2008, at 8:21am

UK - The NFU has released a report examining the 37 billion industry of UK meat retail sales. It focuses on the 76 per cent market domination of the top four supermarkets - Morrisons, Tesco, Sainsbury's and Asda.

The Meat and Livestock Commission has issued the Supermarket Meat Retailing report on behalf of the NFU. It looks at key areas of the livestock industry and its place within the retail sector.

The report's results reveal:

  • Clear evidence that consumers' interest in, and demand for, origin labeling on meat products is undiminished, and if anything is growing
  • tThat together, the top four supermarkets account for around 76 per cent share of retail grocery sales.
  • That fresh and chilled food is more important in sales value than ambient and frozen combined
  • and meat is an important part of retailers' offer

NFU President Peter Kendall said that this is a comprehensive and objective report into the current state of meat retailing.

"I hope will encourage debate about the future of British livestock farming. Rising feed costs are putting intense pressure on sectors of the industry, and are being compounded by higher regulatory costs, all too often associated with measures of no practical benefit. There are plenty of challenges for livestock producers on the supply side of the industry and I hope this report will lead to stronger linkages being forged between our major retailers and the farming community who supplies their raw material," he added.

Food labeling is one key area highlighted in the report for consumers. It states labeling is improving, but with 74 per cent of consumers saying they want to see origin of country clearly marked in the pack, the report also acknowledges that more needs to be done, especially for processed meat.

Other key elements, such as pricing, are covered in the report with the short-term nature of supermarket strategies and fierce competition blamed for stopping increased farm gate value entering the supply chain. The report calls for a brave retailer to lead the market and push the price at farm gate upwards.

Further Reading

More information - You can view the full report by clicking here.

5m Editor