29 June 2000
Welfare, not country, turns on shoppers

By FWi staff

ONLY one in eight shoppers are concerned about country-of-origin labelling when it comes to buying meat products, according to a new survey.

The survey of 1000 adults, was commissioned by the RSPCA to highlight the charitys Freedom Food Farm Welfare Labelling Scheme.

It found that one in four consumers believe animal welfare is more important than price when shopping for meat, according to a survey by the RSPCA.

Animal welfare was the number one priority for a quarter of shoppers surveyed, coming second only to quality, the survey found.

Price ranked third, with only 13% of consumers saying it was their most important consideration when buying meat products.

Only 12% of consumers said country-of-origin was the most important factor.

Peter Davies, RSPCA director general, said: “Clearly the nation is taking more account of welfare when shopping for food.”

British farmers have tried to persuade consumers to buy more British food, rather than opting for cheaper imported products.

However, the survey appears to indicate that it is a good idea to sell food on animal welfare standards, rather than purely because it is British.

Earlier this year, the National Farmers Union launched a British Farm Standards logo to encourage shoppers to buy British.

The kitemark guarantees that the food meets British production standards, including regulations outlining minimum animal welfare standards.

A survey carried out by the union found that the logo would encourage 60% of consumers to buy the food on which it appears.