Promoting the high welfare standards of British poultry production should help boost sales of home-produced chickenmeat in the wake of the horsemeat scandal, according to leading broiler producer, Patrick Joice.

Mr Joice, who produces 5.5 million broilers a year with his father Nigel in Fakenham, Norfolk, said increased interest in traceability meant producers should make more effort to explain to consumers about the high standards they adhere to.

Speaking ahead of this year’s Pig and Poultry Live event at Stoneleigh Park on 15 May, where welfare will be one of the leading topics under discussion, Mr Joice said producers should work with retailers to educate shoppers about UK welfare standards.

“The foundation of our business is welfare, but public perception of what we do and what actually happens differs hugely. That has to change,” said Mr Joice, who last year opened the doors of his farm to the public as part of Open Farm Sunday.

“On the back of the horsemeat scandal there is a push from retailers to work with British agriculture and we need to take advantage of that.

“I hope this means we will work as a united front with retailers to educate the consumer and get around these welfare myths.”

* This and other welfare issues will be discussed at this year’s Pig and Poultry Live event, organised by the RASE and partnered by ABN. Tickets are limited and cost £85 +VAT, though discounts are available. For more information visit www.pigandpoultry.org.uk

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