Scottish Schools opt for local sourcing

A survey of the way red meat is being bought for Scotland's schools and hospitals has revealed that 80% of local authorities are now complying with Scottish Executive guidelines put in place over two years ago governing the procurement of food for th

e public sector.

The red meat industry body, Quality Meat Scotland, revealed the findings at a Scottish Executive procurement conference in Glasgow on 31 October. Since procurement policy changed in Scotland in 2004 QMS has been working with a range of public sector organisations to help them meet the requirement to offer value for money as well as meet the rising public demand for fresh, locally sourced meat to be served in schools, hospitals and the like.

QMS chairman Donald Biggar said: "In the past two years we have helped a large number of public sector organisations meet new guidelines as far as food procurement is concerned and the net result is that more and more schools are now serving up fresh, nutritious, locally sourced red meat to their youngsters.

"We remain ready and willing to work with those organisations who, for one reason or another, have yet to implement the necessary changes in order that the use of imported red meat, from countries offering few if any guarantees on quality or animal welfare standards, is the exception rather than the norm."