10 April 2000
The NFU kitemark – more responses
TONY BLAIR launched a new £2 million kitemark (pictured) to promote British food at the Downing Street summit with farmers leaders on 30 March.
It shows a red tractor with blue wheels on a white background with the words “British Farm Standard” written underneath.
Here are reactions to the kitemark from FWi readers:
I DO not like the logo either. It does not represent much except perhaps the stereotype that farmers like to play with tractors (if indeed that is what it is meant to be).
Prudence Rose, Buckland St Mary, Somerset
COULD someone at the NFU please explain the relevance of an F laid on its back on top of two doughnuts>
Does the F stand for Food, France or the same as the F in NFU – No *!*!*!* Use. Because that sums up both the logo and the NFU.
Good idea – bad execution.
Richard Longthorp, Howden, Humberside
THIS is awful. Look up the old Food From Britain
logo which was a red, white and blue apex with the words British Food Quality set into it. I have still got a roll of stickers!
Ed Brown, Bridgnorth, Shropshire
INCREDIBLE! Whoever approved this logo has no concept of British agriculture.
Richard Rainford, Eccleston, Merseyside
I COMPLETELY agree with all the comments submitted so far.
Why, oh why dont people at the “top” responsible for this type of decision ever bother to ask the consumers – who are our customers and our greatest allies – what they want.
They would find it easy to recognise and support a simple Union Jack endorsed with a suitable text.
Patrick OBrien, Ashford, Kent
THIS logo appears to be advertising the standard of British farm tractors.
It should be scrapped immediately before any further money is thrown down the drain.
Why do we always seem to need a British Standard? Why not have local area standard marks, with the addition of a Union Flag if the goods are being exported – or a dragon or thistle for Wales and Scotland if they want to go their separate ways?
If this was instituted, consumers would then be able to question why produce had been brought in from the other end of the country and at what cost, when similar produce could have been obtained locally.
DAFT. The sooner our interests are taken away from the NFU and put in the hands of a professional marketing company, the better.
Duncan Brightman, Little Staughton, Bedfordshire
LETS use the Union Flag waving from a tractor.
THE new logo, in my personal opinion, is a start, athough not the best, in the search to re-brand UK farming plc.
It is worth remembering that, although the Union Jack appeals to many people, especially the more traditionally minded involved in the industry, it does not instantly
appeal to a good majority of the population.
Our industry needs to be far more effectively marketed.
As a 27-year-old running a family farm, it strikes me as ludicrous how little is spent on marketing the produce that I grow and, on a national scale, even more surprising when one takes into account the value of commodities produced and the ammount spent on promotion even at current values!.
As an industry we need to grasp the concept of marketing and promotion far more than we do currently. Indeed, those producers who are marketing their own meat will know that to do it sucessfully, marketing and promotion are vital.
The new logo may not be ideal to many, and perhaps the industry should have been asked to contribute ideas!
If this industry is to survive the current crisis, then a credible identitiy is essential. When the price comparison is drawn between milk and water, it is worth remembering that what makes bottled water into a high-value product is the product promotion.
Perhaps now that the milk industry has finally agreed a formula for advertising, they should pay a visit to Mr Perriers ad man.
Milk in green bottles – its a thought! Although the bubbles might not go down too well.
Bert Broom, Dorking, Surrey
DOES any one think that the logo is OK? It appears from the comments passed so far that it may not be so.
If the NFU stands by its pledge to be a more democratic organisation than perhaps has been the case in the past, it will not be averse to a change of mind on this particular issue.
It may be the case that as we become more used to the logo we may accept it, but tell me why we should be promoting ourselves as “standard”- surely we can rise above mediocrity!
“Quality” would have been a better description.
No doubt the NFU reads this page,so it may be interesting to hear their response.
Andrew Cooke, Tarporley, Cheshire
THIS is utter madness. We keep pigs and dont actually own a tractor. They should have let Blue Peter have a go.
Alan Kidd, The Bent, Aberdeenshire
WHAT else would you expect fron the NFU and the Government – its no more British than Rover.
HEAVEN help the core industry of the countryside if this is the best marketing experts can come up with.
At least in Wales, we can promote our home-produced products with the Welsh dragon, which is instantly recognisable, which this laid-back F certainly isnt.
Roger van Praet, Llangain, Carmarthen
IT just shows how ideas can be formed by people holding three pieces of Lego and a cheque for £2,000,000. What rubbish!
Patrick Davies, Fishguard, Pembrokeshire
INSTANT reaction would be that it is French produce. Otherwise, knowing that it is a British logo it implies British farming is on its back and accounts for nothing with the two 0s. Very poorly thought-out.
Elizabeth Bulled, North Molton, Devon
YET more waste of my money. The first reaction by our family
to the new logo was French rubbish.
A Union Jack with the bold writing on the top would be far better, as the word British would be the first thing to catch your eye. Remember that British is the most important word.
Hoping that it is not to late to reconsider your choice of logo, What is the matter with the Union Jack?
Have we got no pride left?
IM not convinced about the logo. Surely, the Union Jack and the words “British Produce” would have been more recognisable to most of the British public.
John Richards, Caersws, Powys
WHAT on Earth goes through the minds of the people who have come up with this ridiculous logo? And who sat there and actually approved it?
Reaction from shoppers that it looks French is pretty near the mark in fact. How anyone could come up with a logo to symbolise British produce without incorporating the Union Flag is beyond me.
Here we had a marvellous opportunity to launch a benchmark symbol for the future, and basically weve blown it! This logo symbolises, to me, all that is wrong with the British farming industry – people at the top who have no idea whatsoever.
We are crying out for inspired leadership, and what do we get? A cock-up!
Tom Johnston, Durdar, Carlisle
It looks too mechanical and like Thomas the tank engine. But youll never please all of the people all of the time!
I dont have any better suggestions, Im afraid.
MD Clarke, Dalkieth, Midlothian
PLEASE can you incorporate the British Flag in the colour scheme.
Jeremy Scudamore, Mitcheldean, Gloucestershire
UNION Jack and tick seem a very good idea. The logo shown looks like “Toys R Us”.
Darran Ward, Shirley, W Midlands
David Barratt, Hungerford, Berkshire
IT shows British farmers on their backs in a hearse.
Andy White, Grantham, Lincolnshire
MY view on the logo is that it would look better on the packaging for a childs toy. It is unimaginative and the “F” achieves nothing.
Phil Eades, Sandbach, Cheshire
VERY poor – the tractor gives the idea of a mechanical world. We need to show humans are in control.
CJ Leamon, Matching Green, Essex
MY baby could have come up with a better logo.
PATHETIC and useless is the only word for it. Yesterday someone (a member of the public) said it looks like a six-year-olds drawing of a steam-engine!
Mike Hart, Small and Family Farms Association
THE new kitemark is not the answer, and what a waste of £2 million. Better to have given the cash to pig farmers.
The only labelling that is needed on produce is one with “made or produced in the UK”, next to a Union Jack.
these other marks, triangles, kitemarks are only thought up to cause confusion and to put more money in the consultants pockets, with nothing for the producer.
Patrick Hughes, Saffron Walden, Essex
I THINK it is a very bad logo.
It is too mechanical and harsh. More of the countryside and its clean green image should be portrayed. A child of 11 could have done better.
Alan Hunter, Eglinton, Northern Ireland