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Farmers urged to get hands on to counter anti-meat eating propaganda

The industry has been told to ‘tell their stories in their own words’ to spread a more positive message. 

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Farmers urged to get hands on to counter anti-meat eating propaganda

Farmers have been urged to pro-actively help counter anti-meat eating propaganda.

 

Speaking at a press briefing in Edinburgh, Kate Rowell, chairman of Quality Meat Scotland, called on fellow levy payers to play their part in spreading a more positive message.

 

She said: “As a farmer and a vet I am well aware of the challenges faced by our industry and equally aware of the dedication and sheer hard graft that goes into producing the nutritious food source that is quality assured beef, lamb and pork.

 

“Having spoken with hundreds of people in my first six months as QMS chair I am also very aware of the immense frustration being felt at grassroots level about the wave of unbalanced, and very often totally inaccurate, media coverage driven by some very well-funded organisations with an anti-red meat agenda.


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“In the coming weeks we will be launching a Meat with Integrity campaign which focuses on the industry’s sustainability and animal welfare messages and QMS wants farmers and others who work in the industry to help us.”

 

Carol McLaren, head of marketing and communications at QMS, said the campaign would launch on July 29 with billboard, press and media activity.

 

“We want farmers to be involved so that they can tell their own stories in their own words,” she said. “This is really a call out to the industry to help.

 

Noise

“The pro-vegan campaign in January did not have a huge effect. In fact figures show a slight increase in meat consumption over the same month the previous year.

 

“The campaign did however create a huge amount of noise which we want to answer.”

 

Research had shown that flexitarians – those who are mostly vegetarian but still ate meat occasionally – considered animal welfare to be a priority.

Kate Rowell
Kate Rowell

Ms McLaren said QMS was well placed to answer these concerns thanks to its partnership with the Scottish Society for the Protection from Cruelty for Animals (SSPCA).

 

It is the believed that this is the only instance in the world where an animal welfare charity has an involvement in meat quality assurance schemes.

 

QMS has also launched a video in support of Leaf Open Farm Sunday on June 9. The target is to have 30 Scottish farms actively involved.

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