30 January 2015 | Online since 2003



29 April 2014|News

Beef farmers feel betrayed over farm gate price drop


The National Farmers' Union has criticised the gap between farm gate and retail prices for beef.

Figures released from Eblex show farm gate prices have dropped while the price paid by consumers for beef has remained stable. The latest indication to March is that the producer share of final retail price is well below the 58 per cent received in March 2013, and three per cent below the 51 per cent received in the second half of 2013.

Andy Foot, NFU beef group chairman, said it was infuriating for farmers to see further reductions on the beef price when retailer margins to March had shown an increase.

“Last year we heard from retailers that they wanted to source more British beef,” said Mr Foot. “They were keen to work with us to ensure a secure future for our farmers, and I am bitterly disappointed to see how short their memories are.

“We work in an industry with a long production cycle and low margins and we simply cannot afford to be toyed with. It is a significant investment to buy store cattle, let alone suckler cows, so how is a farmer meant to do so with any degree of confidence of a return on his or her investment when you can see prices slashed overnight?

“Farmers are going to feel betrayed that this drop in price also comes in the middle of Great British Beef Week, at a time when retailers should be supporting beef production. A sustainable price does not mean paying just enough to get by on, it means paying enough to actually re-invest in your business to meet future demand and challenges, including climate change.

“Evidence has shown time and time again that consumers are interested in the provenance of their food and want to buy British beef, and that they want to support British farmers and see them receiving a fair price. Farmers are incredibly grateful for the support we receive from consumers, and I hope that retailers listen to both their suppliers and their customers and start to live up to their promises.”

NFU livestock board chairman Charles Sercombe said: “I had hoped that off the back of the legacy of the horse meat scandal, and Great British Beef Week, we would see retailers living up to their promise to engage with the supply chain, and like Andy, I am deeply disappointed to see this drive to force down prices down. With retailers making an increasing margin from beef, farmers need to see an end to this short termism. This is completely incompatible with an industry that works in years rather than months.

“British farmers work hard to produce a world class product, and while we see recognition of this in our export markets, it can be difficult for farmers to stomach when the domestic market does not recognise it.”

Download



Comments


No comments posted yet. Be the first to post a comment

To post comment without approval login or register

Display name

Please enter your name

Email (optional)
Comment

Please enter your comment

Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.

Some error on your process.Please try one more time.



Jobs


14 January 2015
Welding Engineer - 176800
We currently have a vacancy for a welder fabricator with a general engineer background for a busy dairy producer based in Cre...

16 January 2015
Business Development Manager - Road Transport
150 years of delivering excellence to the Medical, FMCG, Food Packaging, Dairy & Fruit and Veg Markets we offer refrigera...

29 January 2015
Lecturer in Farm Animal Services
Job Ref: 032502 • View Employer Profile The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies is looking for an enthusiastic and expe...

23 January 2015
CLASS TEACHER
Adjacent is our farm, which provides organic produce for the community. Sheiling School Thornbury is seeking a full time enth...

23 January 2015
Development Co-Ordinator
Operating from 4 dairies & 2 logistics centres in rural Somerset & Devon, we employ over 1700 staff & produce mor...




Top stories you may have missed
12 November 2014 | Arable
GM crops 'good for farmers and the envir...

GM crops 'good for farmers and the envir...

GM crops are good for the economy and can reduce the amount of pesticides u...


6 November 2014 | Cattle
Smaller European markets drive beef expo...

Smaller European markets drive beef expo...

Demand from smaller European markets has helped drive strong growth for UK ...


6 November 2014 | Agri Safety
Lack of engineers a 'ticking time bomb' ...

Lack of engineers a 'ticking time bomb' ...

A lack of engineers, not enough people promoting the land-based industries ...


4 November 2014 | Bees and Beekeeping
Bee action plan due: Last chance for bee...

Bee action plan due: Last chance for bee...

Environment Secretary Elizabeth Truss is launching the National Pollinator ...


4 November 2014 | Arable
Experts welcome financial boost for youn...

Experts welcome financial boost for youn...

Agricultural specialists have welcomed a potential financial boost for youn...


3 November 2014 | News
Supermarket competition on prices 'risks...

Supermarket competition on prices 'risks...

As retailers continue to participate in a highly competitive race to the bo...


31 October 2014 | Arable
New Defra farm figures 'underline volati...

New Defra farm figures 'underline volati...

New farm business income data from Defra, which focus on income from March ...


30 October 2014 | Agri Safety
Agriculture remains one of UK's most dan...

Agriculture remains one of UK's most dan...

Agriculture has remained one of the industries in which workers are most li...


29 October 2014 | Finance
UK farmland prices see 'substantial grow...

UK farmland prices see 'substantial grow...

Prime arable land in the UK has seen a substantial year-on-year growth in p...


27 October 2014 | Arable
Satellites to help farmers pinpoint dise...

Satellites to help farmers pinpoint dise...

A new mobile app for farmers able to pinpoint and identify disease, pests a...