25 February 2000

New initiative

BEEF farmers in the East Anglian Broads environmentally sensitive area are being offered help to establish a new marketing initiative to attract premium prices.

Grazing is an integral part of the management regime of the Broads ESA, and officials are concerned that the farming crisis could aggravate a shortage of beef cattle.

Dougall McNeill, assistant ESA project officer, has come up with the Broadland Beef marketing idea.

Although the Farming and Rural Conservation Agency is willing to act as facilitator and help draw up a business plan, Mr McNeill said the initiative would have to be run by beef producers and buyers. If sufficient interest is shown, a half-day seminar will be organised in May. Enquiries to Mr McNeill on 01284-750102. &#42