17 January 2000
Livestock group builds 2m meat plant

By FWi staff

WEST Country livestock farmers fed up with poor farmgate prices have banded together in a new venture to add value to the beef they produce.

Work begins today (17 January) on a 2 million meat processing plant in Bovey Tracey in Devon, owned by the 160-stong group who formed Triple S Ranch.

The farmers intend that the plant will increase returns on forecuts, which will be used in pie fillings. Hindquarter cuts will be sold on the premium-cut market.

Triple S Ranch has signed a deal with a local bakery, which was attracted by the traceability and production guarantees the company could offer.

South-west NFU director Anthony Gibson told the BBC that benefits were more likely to come from returns on their investments in a profitable company, rather premiums paid on produce.

NFU president Ben Gill said the Triple S Ranch example was one which other producers should look at closely and copy.