Consumers want home-grown meat

More than half of UK consumers have said they would prefer to buy UK-sourced meat and poultry instead of  meat imported from abroad, a new study has found.

The findings came from a report by YouGov Sixth Sense, which looked at consumer attitudes towards the provenance of food.

According to the report, 59% of consumers preferred to buy meat and poultry produced in the UK and 48% liked to buy locally-sourced meat. When buying locally-sourced meat, more than a quarter of consumers said they were happy to pay more for it, but 39% of consumers were swayed by price more than anything.

Many consumers purchased meat and poultry habitually, with 66% regularly opting for the same products on each shopping trip. The report also highlighted the dominance of the major supermarket on meat sales, with almost three-quarters of consumers confirming that they bought meat from a supermarket. Only one in five of respondents said they made an effort to buy meat and poultry from retailers other than supermarkets.

Given the dominance of the multiples, consumers felt more should be done for local food producers and 45% of respondents said they thought supermarkets could make more of an effort to sell locally sourced foods.  40% of consumers said supermarkets should source more foods from the UK.

YouGov consumer consulting director Rob Cushen explained that research showed there was a demand for locally, regionally and UK-produced foods. He said: “The question is to what extent food and drink manufacturers are successfully promoting the provenance of their ranges through advertising and packaging. In order to capture this opportunity fully, food and drink companies need to review and research their current and future packaging and test whether the right messages are being picked up by consumers.”