NFMFT head delivers food waste message

Butchers are well-placed to tackle the issues surrounding food waste, according to the new president of the National Federation of Meat & Food Traders (NFMFT).

John Taylor, who took over the role of president from outgoing Michael Ward, told delegates to the NFMFT AGM last month that, with food waste high on the consumer agenda, butchers' abilities would become key. "I am confident that our skill in the way we serve and prepare our products and know what changes to follow each week, makes us very effective in the control of food waste," said Taylor.

He said the flexibility of butchers to meet customers' precise needs, down to simply selling one sausage for example, was a strength.

However, he expressed disappointment that the Food Standards Agency's (FSA's) 5-a-Day campaign to boost healthy eating made no provision for meat consumption. "We in the meat industry are in favour of a balanced diet. Over the last two centuries, it has been more than proven that meat has made a very big difference to our health. Meat is an enjoyable way to put into our bodies the vitamins that are needed."

He refuted the suggestion that sausages were unhealthy and said that butchers were working to reduce the salt content of sausages in line with FSA guidelines. He also highlighted work with Norfolk Trading Standards to reduce salt in sausages by encouraging a wet method of mixing. He added that the NFMFT had involved Lucas Ingredients in the work, and tests were now being carried out to assess the shelf-life implications.