People have said I am mad and many in the industry have accused me of lying.
My new range of pork raised without antibiotics has certainly caused a stir since its launch in December.
The green label has been deemed ‘misleading’ to consumers for perpetuating the myth giving antibiotics to animals is bad.
But the real problem comes down to the fact antibiotics need to be handled more responsibly.
The farming industry will tell us the regular use of antibiotics is in the best interest of animals, and I for one do not want to see animals suffer unnecessarily.
If they need antibiotics, I think they should be given them.
But as we are now realising in the human population, overuse and unnecessary use of antibiotics is leading to disease resistant strains.
A Government review found ‘excessive use’ of antibiotics on farms had fuelled a global rise in drug resistant diseases, described as a ‘catastrophic threat’ to human health.
There are still many terrible things happening because consumers do not know. Most farming is about efficiency and making money. Welfare comes quite far down the list.
I believe there is a growing number of consumers who prefer not to be consuming meat which has been raised with antibiotics, just as there are consumers who prefer their meat to be reared to organic standards or within RSPCA-approved guidelines.
The consumer has been fantastic at pushing our industry into improving farming practices, making this country’s animal welfare standards some of the best in the world.
Raised without antibiotics is another step in this direction.
I am glad to be the first to market with this concept in pork cuts.
Being an outsider, I am able to challenge convention. I was the first mainstream brand to pioneer gluten-free sausages.
Now, 12 years on, gluten free is mainstream.
In another 12 years, I would like for there to be no need for a brand championing ‘raised without antibiotics’ as it will have become common practice.