13 August 1999
Tesco denies tit-for-tat ban on German meat

By FWi Staff

SUPERMARKET giant Tesco has denied it cancelled a consignment of German pork in retribution for Germanys continuing ban on British beef.

The Express newspaper reported today (Friday) that Tesco had cancelled a £5 million shipment of organic pork from Lower Saxony in direct retaliation to Germanys continuing ban.

But David Sawday of Tesco said the incident was in no way connected. “The demand for organic pork has grown so much that we cant get enough from the UK,” he added.

He claimed that the shipment had not been cancelled, but rather delayed because the company was not ready for it. The shipment is now expected in a few weeks.

Mr Sawday acknowledged that British farmers were having a hard time, and said he hoped that when there was enough organic pork in the UK, this market could be supplied 100% by Britain.

Were trying to do our best and will work to support the more reasonable demands of British farmers, he said. “We are not the enemy, the enemy is oversupply.”

But he said that unreasonable demands included supermarkets stopping all foreign imports; and putting a price floor in the market.

Farmers blockading depots to get some short-term fix was illegal, said Mr Sawday.

Both Sainsburys and Safeway said they did not import organic pork from Germany either, and had no plans to do so.