SIX OF the leading farm assurance schemes have reorganised their operations so they become more integrated and can promote the Little Red Tractor more effectively. 

The schemes involved are Assured Combinable Crops, Assured Produce, Assured British Meat, National Dairy Farm Assured Scheme, Assured Chicken Production and Assured British Pigs.

The schemes have integrated under the umbrella of Assured Food Standards which is the organisation in charge of the red tractor logo.

Colin Smith, AFS chairman, said the move was a major milestone which would put the body in a stronger position to promote assurance using the tractor logo.

“We are already working up a marketing and communication strategy to take the message to consumers.

“AFS has commissioned a specialist ‘innovation‘ company to develop a proposition to bring the Red Tractor logo to life for consumers,” he said.

“AFS is also recruiting a marketing manager to help drive the communication strategy.”

Assured Food Standards believes that a more cross-sectoral approach to assurance has already been delivering benefits. 

It points out that in the past three years AFS has begun to give farmers and growers a choice of assurance inspection bodies.

It has also managed to facilitate assurance of several commodities on a mixed farm through a single inspection. 

These developments have led to greater efficiencies and reduced costs, it says.

But the organisation says there is still more progress to be made which will be simplified by the new integrated structure.