Push to improve red meat pricing

A PROJECT TO establish price-transparency in the beef and lamb deadweight marketplace has been announced by the NFU and National Sheep Association.

The two organisations want to work within the industry to devise and implement clear terms and conditions of trade in the red meat deadweight marketplace.

They insist that new conditions must be fair to both suppliers and customers.

David Morgan, vice chair of the NFU livestock board, said beef and sheep farmers currently traded in an environment created by and for the benefit of their customers.

“Payment received for beef and lamb carcasses can be subject to stoppages, deductions, and bonuses, which vary from plant to plant.

“Also the specification of grading, and trimming of a carcass can vary significantly. We must have full transparency.”

Mr Morgan said the creation of a transparent and fair trading platform would stimulate competition between processors for the supply of quality meat in exchange for fair reward.

In addition, it would stimulate the production of high quality, profit-yielding carcasses, which would serve to develop the strength of the industry.

The project is in its research phase and both organisations are building on existing strong links with the processing sector and others within the industry.

The NFU intends the process to start with the control of non-statutory industry levies, moving onto a review of grading techniques, pricing grids and the evaluation of a market structure based on meat yield. 

“We all need to be thinking about the future. Being part of a strong, market focused, red meat industry, will guarantee UK livestock farmers a prosperous future post CAP reform,” said Mr Morgan.