Boycott EU, buy British! New site urges public to support UK pork as Brexit red tape hits

Brexit: Boris Johnson given 'misinformation' says Mummery

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The site, created by the National Pig Association (NPA), explained the benefits of British pork, including its “unique diversity of production systems to meet all price points”. It also outlined how British pork is responsibly sourced, environmentally sustainable and produced to high welfare standards.

While highlighting how British pork is a “tasty, nutritious and healthy” option, the site urges people to show their support for the British pig sector in various ways.

These include looking out for the Red Tractor and RSPCA Assured logos and Union Flag on various meat products and packaging.

The organisation wrote: “If there is no clear indication of where your pork comes from, for example when you are in the local butchers or eating out or buying food to take out, ask where it comes from.”

The NPA also called for people to write to their local MPs to urge them to support British pork.

Zoe Davies, NPA chief executive, said: “As the website says, all consumers should be able to choose British pork if they want to.

“Buying British doesn’t mean that it is automatically more expensive, and by supporting British farmers you are making a better choice environmentally and for pig welfare.”

Back in February this year, the NPA warned the current issues facing the industry could “rapidly turn into a crisis”.

The pig sector was hit with new Brexit checks and paper-based certification requirements at the borders, causing delays to exports.

This comes as the industry struggled throughout the coronavirus pandemic last year as several pork plants were affected by outbreaks of the virus.

Roundtable talks, which were chaired by Defra’s Farming Minister Victoria Prentis, took place in February.

Ms Davies said: “We have been working very hard to raise awareness of all the issues facing the industry and it is really important that we will now have ministerial involvement as we look to find solutions.”

Last month, the British meat industry warned Christmas dinner could be at risk due to labour shortages as a result of Brexit.

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More than 70 percent of staff in some of the processing factories across the UK are from eastern European countries.

But tens of thousands have not yet made applications to remain in the UK under the EU settlement scheme, which closes on June 30.

The British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) warned they had already seen a shortage of staff in processing factories.

They warned this is likely to escalate in the coming months, sparking concerns Christmas dinner could be jeopardised.

A BMPA spokesperson told Farmers Weekly: “We are hearing that some factories are struggling to keep throughput going.

“As Christmas work nears, this will only get worse.”

Back in January, meat exporters to the EU were hit with lengthy customs and health checks as part of more stringent rules, with customers cancelling orders and costly meat destroyed before reaching the continent as it’s no longer fresh.

BMPA chief executive Nick Allen warned EU customers would abandon British businesses and look elsewhere for meat imports if border issues were not resolved.

David Lindars from the BMPA warned more than 120 lorries carrying British meat was stuck at Rotterdam port in the south of Holland, including one transporting pork.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has already been forced to bail out the UK fishing industry due to Brexit red tape.

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