TESCO HAS promised to make life a little easier for its beef and lamb producers, many of whom attended an open day partly sponsored by the supermarket last week.
Farmers who raise beef animals and lambs for the organic and Finest ranges will be the first to benefit from the introduction of contracts
And over the next 12 months, the retailer is planning to look at extending the scheme to all its meat producers.
“Feedback from days like this tells us that British farmers want more security and more opportunity to add value and so we are working hard to offer this,” said Tesco commercial director Steve Murrells.
“We are in the process of rolling out a provenance message on all British products which is key to their marketing in our stores – so customers know they are buying British and buying quality.”
The announcement was welcomed by NFU Scotland, which said it had lobbied hard for recognition of the price pressure that Scottish producers were under.
“We had an extremely productive meeting with Tesco,” said NFUS chief executive Andy Robertson.
“Of particular concern to NFUS has been unclear labelling, which might confuse customers into mistaking foreign beef for Scotch.
“Tesco has recognised this concern and will be reviewing its beef labelling policy to ensure the country of origin is clearly stated on all its fresh and processed beef products.”
The supermarket has also agreed to hold regular meetings between farmers and its beef buyers in Scotland, where it will share crucial trade forecasts to help them plan ahead.