March 19, 2013

Tesco to buy more meat from north




As it plans to see the amount of locally produced meat and poultry on supermarket shelves jump from less than 20% to more than 90%, Tesco is to double the amount of fresh meat it sources in the north.


Philip Clarke, the company's chief executive said Thursday (Mar 14), "We're going to double the amount that we spend on buying fresh meat, pork and chicken from Northern Ireland farmers."


"Within the next few weeks we are going to be sourcing from less than 20% of the meat that we source locally to around 90%. And, we are not going to stop there. We are going to aim to get as close as we can to 100%," Clarke said.


The surprise announcement was made during a visit to Belfast, where he opened a new Institute for Global Food Security.


Tesco already spends £500 million (US$755 million) a year and stocks around 1,800 products from 90 Northern Irish suppliers. But after the horse meat scandal which has shaken consumer confidence in the food supply chain, customers are now keener to know where their meat comes from.


"The food supply chain has got that bit more complicated and it leaves in it opportunities for people to be sloppy at best or to be fraudulent at worst. When all the inquiries are complete it is going to be very clear that there are elements in the supply chain who are seeking to adulterate products of all suppliers, retailers and manufacturers. The work that everyone is doing now is to make sure that can't happen again."