NPA issues an open letter to retailers
1st Oct 2021 / By Andrea Tranter
The NPA has today issued an open letter to all retailers calling on them to help resolve the industry crisis.
The open letter has been issued to all media outlets, calling on British retailers to help support the industry and to help resolve the crisis we are in and not to turn to importing cheaper EU meat.
The letter highlights the issues importing cheaper EU meat is having on the current labour shortage in processing plants. NPA Chairman Rob Mutimer explains that highly processed products such as gammons needed for Christmas have diverted essential butchery staff resource away from that required for British pigs. We have also seen other products that require no butchery being imported and prioritised over more labour-intensive British products, simply to keep the supermarket shelves full. These two issues combined have resulted in a slowing down of the throughput of British pigs through plants, which is adding to the already severe backlog.
We are also aware that some retailers, who have to date been very supportive of their British supply chains, are now considering moving over to EU pork because it is much cheaper. This would make our situation so much worse to the point that many more pig producers, in addition to those responsible for the 27,500 sows we already know about, would have no choice but to exit the industry.
You can read the full letter below.