Hugh back on the chicken campaign

The poultry sector is bracing itself for the return of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall to TV next week.

The new series of River Cottage, which runs on Channel 4 from Wednesday, will see an update on Fearnley-Whittingstall's Chicken Out campaign.

The campaign was launched earlier this year in a series of programmes called 'Hugh's Chicken Run' and attacked indoor poultry production, urging consumers to switch to free-range chicken.

The campaign saw a brief spike in sales of free-range following the programme, but these have now settled back. Sales have risen slightly in the last 12 months, with free-range now accounting for around 7.9% of the market, from around 6%, industry experts said.

The River Cottage series will give a brief update on the campaign, but programme makers said there would be a fuller update to follow, although no date had been set.