Sustainable supply chains are the key to tackling the
economic threats to the British pig industry says British
Pig Executive (BPEX) Chairman Stewart Houston.
Lord Rooker and Stewart Houston
Stewart's comments came during a meeting between himself,
Food and Farming Minister Lord Rooker, Sainsbury's business
unit director for dairy and convenience foods Simon Twigger
and Sainsbury's agricultural manager Annie Graham at Sainsbury's
store in Pimlico.
In the last two years the industry has made real competitive
progress by improving productivity and there are tentative
signs of a recovery but these are being threatened by economic
factors such as rising feed costs.
Stewart said: "BPEX has been in discussion with the
major retailers, including Sainsbury's, over ways to strengthen
and develop co-operation in the supply chain.
"Sainsbury's already has a well-developed group for
beef suppliers and we are discussing the possibility of
extending the concept to the pig industry.
"The economic sustainability of the industry is being
seriously threatened in Britain and elsewhere by the rapid
rise in feed costs.
"We urgently need to help suppliers address this
issue or we will see many more pig producers leaving the
Sainsbury's Simon Twigger said: "Our customers tell
us that buying British pork is very important to them,
so we have significantly increased the amount of British
pork on our counters. We are now 100% British on pork across
all core lines.
"In addition, we've worked hard to maximise carcass
utilisation for fresh pork and pork manufacturing, recently
introducing two lines into our basics range to maximise
returns to pig farmers."
Jeff Rooker said: "The visit this morning gave me
a good view of the retail supply chain and I applaud the
British pig industry and retailers working in partnership
to promote British pig products."
During his discussions, Stewart Houston raised the issue
of export recovery in the wake of FMD with Lord Rooker
stressing the importance of targeting particular countries
outside the EU, particularly in the Far East.
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Reducing the Impact of Increasing Pig Feed Costs
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