The NFU is looking for farmers willing to help monitor the sales and pricing of New Zealand lamb in supermarkets.

Over recent years most British supermarkets have increased their proportion of fresh NZ lamb sold in store.

This was particularly noticeable in 2007 as some retailers turned their back on British farmers in favour of cheaper NZ lamb.

According to the NFU, the notable exception was Morrisons who has picked up the NFU challenge and extended their British season to all year round.

Promises

To assist the NFU in understanding which retailers are delivering on their promises, NFU livestock chairman Thomas Binns is calling on members to monitor sales.

The lamb store watch will run each month and members are asked to email or fax back their one-page survey form.

The early results for February suggest that Tesco is packing imported lamb under its finest range and there could be better signposting of local and regaional lamb in stores.

Mr Binns said: “The NFU has been successful in encouraging some retailers to extend their British season for lamb. In addition to Morrisons, Sainsburys and M&S have also trialled extending their British season. The NFU lamb store watch will provide useful evidence in our ongoing discussions with retailers.”

The NFU website has a copy of the survey forum which can be printed off or emailed.