Pig producers have welcomed a new campaign encouraging consumers to eat pulled pork to help rebalance the carcase during the Covid-19 crisis.
Running for six weeks, Make it Pulled Pork aims to get the British public to buy and recreate restaurant-style dishes at home.
The £100,000 campaign looks at boosting the domestic market for pork shoulder joints, which would normally have a ready outlet in pubs and restaurants.
The National Pig Association (NPA) welcomed the campaign as 'much-needed', despite the UK pork sector coping 'far better' than many other sectors.
Pig producers have been partly boosted by strong export volumes to China, which have helped balance the carcase, the NPA explained.
But stocks of shoulders and bellies have been building up in cold stores due to the loss of much of the food service trade.
Typically, the eating-out market accounts for around 14% of all pork volume sales in Britain.
But AHDB estimates the recent loss of foodservice outlets could lead to an additional 503m in-home meal occasions per week, ‘providing a perfect opportunity for consumers to rekindle their passion for pulled pork’.
New content has been added to the campaign's website, LovePork, providing tips and advice on how to cook pork shoulder.
On social media, posts and recipe suggestions will be targeted at LovePork’s 100,000 Instagram and Facebook followers using the hashtag #PerfectPulledPork.
Farmers and others in the supply chain can boost the campaign’s following by posting assets or by photographing their own recipes and using the hashtag.
Angela Christison, AHDB's strategy director for pork, said: “Pulled pork offers an easy, affordable and delicious way for families to recreate restaurant-quality food in the comfort of their own home.
“I encourage the industry to get involved in the campaign and help spread the word about #PerfectPulledPork in these challenging times.”