A campaign to educate people about the key role of lean red meat in a healthy diet has been launched by Great Britain’s three red meat organisations.
Fronted by three celebrities from the worlds of television and sport, #LeanRedMeat was launched on Monday (3 December) across England, Scotland and Wales.
The campaign, from the joint-funded programme by the AHDB, Hybu Cig Cymru (Meat Promotion Wales) and Quality Meat Scotland, aims to highlight the nutritional benefits of red meat.
Challenges currently facing red meat
- Increase of vocal vegetarians and vegans, such as the Veganuary campaign
- Rise in popularity of flexitarian diets, such as Meat Free Mondays
- Criticism of the environmental effect of beef and sheepmeat production, and in particular high greenhouse gas emissions
- Misinformation being spread about the effect of red meat on diets
- Proposed meat tax, similar to sugar tax, to reduce consumption
It also intends to counter misinformation on the role of red meat in a balanced diet.
Welsh and Lions rugby star Shane Williams, television presenter and Celebrity MasterChef winner Angellica Bell and ex-Scotland rugby player and Strictly Come Dancing contestant Thom Evans are fronting the campaign for Wales, England and Scotland, respectively.
Each celebrity surprised a fan in Cardiff, Edinburgh and London to teach them a quick and easy recipe with lean red meat and to educate them on the nutritional benefits of incorporating it in a balanced diet.
Watch Mr Evans create delicious and nutritious beef fajitas, courtesy of the #LeanRedMeat campaign, in the video below.
Aiming to appeal to a younger audience, the campaign has a social media focus and will include the hashtags #WeekdayWinner and #MidweekMeal to encourage more midweek meat meals.
A nutrition factsheet has been developed for distribution to healthcare professionals.
Gwyn Howells, HCC chief executive, said: “We have a good story to tell on the positive role lamb, beef and pork can play in a healthy, balanced diet, supplying a wide range of essential nutrients.”
The campaign has been funded by the £2m AHDB red meat levies that have been ring-fenced for collaborative projects, which is managed by the three meat levy bodies.
This fund is an interim arrangement, while a long-term solution is sought on the issue of levies being collected at point of slaughter in England for animals reared in Scotland or Wales.
Benefits of red meat
- High nutrient density.
- Major source of protein.
- The type of iron found in red meat (haem iron) is more easily absorbed and used by the body than the iron in plant foods.
- Good source of readily absorbable zinc, which is important for the healthy functioning of the immune system, growth, wound healing and fertility.
- Provides other minerals such as potassium and selenium. Selenium is an important antioxidant.
- Significant source of B vitamins and has recently been found to make an important contribution to vitamin D intakes.
- On average fully trimmed raw lean beef contains just 5% fat and fully trimmed raw lean lamb 8%.
- About half of the fat found in red meat is unsaturated, which is believed to be healthier.
- Contains small amounts of Omega 3 fats, which help to keep the heart healthy.
- Naturally low in salt.
Source: AHDB Beef & Lamb