Asda backs hill farmers

Asda is aiming to back foot-and-mouth hit British farmers with the launch of a new meat pack.

The chain has unveiled its Hill Lamb Pack, working with supplier Welsh Country Foods, in a bid to lessen the impact of the export ban on hill farmers.

The pack includes a leg joint, breast, shoulder and chops and Asda said it expected the scheme to help sell the equivalent of 500 hill lambs initially, equating to around 20% of the volume WCF would export each week.

It said it had launched the scheme in response to the fact that hill farmers were particularly hard-hit in the 2001 FMD outbreak.

Pearce Hughes, Asda's agriculture development manager, said: "The 2001 foot and mouth outbreak showed us that hill lamb producers are among the worse affected when overseas markets are lost.

"We wanted to create something that would offer an immediate lifeline for farmers whose lambs are normally exported. Although we can't solve the problem for all hill farmers, we do hope it will go some way to preventing a price crash until exports resume, which, fingers crossed, will be very soon."