Lamb carcasses hanging up in abattoir© FLPA/John Eveson/Rex Shutterstock

Wrexham-based abattoir Fairfield Meats has been bought by Farmers First, a farmer-owned business looking to expand British lamb sales.

The firm, which will trade as Farmers Fresh Wales, will begin operations early in the new year, expecting to slaughter up to 30,000 lambs a week.

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Farmers First already sells more than 500,000 lamb carcasses a year. Chairman Terry Bayliss said the group had wanted to process stock in Wales for a long time.

The company was set up in the late 1990s and is owned by more than 2,700 farmer shareholders, more than 1,100 of whom farm in Wales.

Part of the decision to create the business back in 1998 was to help farmers gain access to European markets to enable them to sell their lamb on a larger scale.

Spokesperson Mike Gooding said the customer base from Fairfield Meat complemented that of Farmers Fresh well.