15 September 2000
Controversial pig campaign continues

The third phase of a controversial pigmeat campaign is under way, using adverts in regional newspapers to highlight good practice among British farmers.

The Meat and Livestock Commission, which is overseeing the campaign hopes the adverts will stimulate sympathetic coverage in the local press.

Adverts in south-west England will focus on Andrew Freemantle, a young pig farmer who practices high welfare standards, said an MLC spokesman.

Mr Freemantle opens his farm to visitors and has opened a farm shop as well as an internet web-site trading as Friendly Farm Foods.

But the web-site has been disappointing so far.

Mr Freemantles plan was to link up with other food producers selling on the internet and using a central distribution centre to boost efficiency.

So far he has had no takers for the co-operative idea.

Mr Freemantle was delighted to have been chosen for the advert and agreed that the promotion was an essential part of rebuilding the British pig industry.

Controversy has dogged the MLC campaign since it began in May.

Phase one used hard-hitting adverts to highlight superior welfare standards on British pig farms and the nature, quality and traceability of the feed ingredients.

Phase two aimed to educate shoppers about that British pigmeat is often produced to higher standards than other countries with less restrictive rules.

Overseas producers claim that the campaign is unfair.