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Research has found a significant demand among British consumers for locally sourced meat. A survey found meat to be something Brits are willing to splash out on most when it is sourced locally. As well as this, more than two-fifths of the public prefer to buy British, regardless of what the price tag says, with half doing so for environmental reasons.
Despite this, much of the meat on our supermarket shelves is imported. £66.6bn worth of meat was imported into the UK last year, much of which is coming from the Republic of Ireland. Beef makes up nearly half of all meat imports to the UK with pork accounting for just over a third and lamb around 20%.
This has prompted the rise of the independent butcher, with locally sourced red meat sales up by as much as 50% since the first lockdown. The average UK pork trade was up 24.2% on year-earlier figures but specialist butchers have seen a 48.4% jump in sales. The same can be said for lamb sales, although they were static across supermarkets butchers’ shops saw a 24.9% rise.
Aston spoke to Thomas Kitchen-Dunn, butcher and founder of Lamb2ewe to discuss the research in further detail.