PUTTING older beef back onto the market brings major challenges and opportunities for the abattoir sector both in terms of approval for processing and marketing.
But help was at hand from the English Beef and Lamb Executive (EBLEX) who joined forces with DEFRA to deliver five workshops held across the country providing guidance and information.
The speakers included Stuart Roberts from Defra's TSE department, Duncan Sinclair, Economic Manager for Beef at the Meat and Livestock Commission and EBLEX Master Butcher Dick van Leeuwen.
The workshops looked at the technical side with expert input on the steps abattoirs need to take gain MHS/FSA approval to process older cattle for the foodchain.
They also examined opportunities for developing both domestic and export sales. Information on cutting and preparing cow beef was also presented. EBLEX has produced a CDrom providing lots of detailed information on the key issues.
EBLEX Head of Marketing Andrew Garvey said: "It was a good series of meetings providing practical information and they were well received by those attending.
"The focus was on providing the abattoir sector with the information needed to gain approval for processing over 30 month cattle.
"Each individual plant will need to consider carefully the requirements and how they can best meet them."