Plans are well under way for next year's National Butchers' Week the week-long celebration of butchery which aims to put the spotlight on your business.
A steering committee of stakeholders from across industry is busy drawing up a range of initiatives to ensure that next year's event goes with a bang.
Now entering its fourth year, National Butchers' Week, which takes place on 13-20 March, is growing in popularity and aims to put the national spotlight on the profession and urge consumers to make the most of the craft skills on offer in the high street.
Ed Bedington, editor of Meat Trades Journal, which organises the week, said: "We've seen increasing focus on the sector each year, and the week gets better and better. More and more butchers are using the opportunity to bang the drum for the trade.
"MTJ and the week's sponsors will be seeking to promote butchers during the week with a number of PR activities, but it is down to individual businesses to make the most of the opportunity by coming up with some ideas to get customers talking."
To aid butchers in promotional schemes to make the most of the week, MTJ will run a series of features over the next few months giving an in-depth look at a promotional method which has proved successful. In this month's issue, on pages 20-21, MTJ takes a look at the idea of the Pick 'n' Mix scheme, which has proved a hit for Scottish butchers.
The 2011 week will focus on positioning butchers as the experts in their field and urging consumers that, if they want to know anything about meat, they should 'Ask the expert'.
Bedington added: "When it comes to meat, consumer knowledge is pretty woeful they have become used to picking up a steak in a packet. But they're becoming more interested in their food and that provides an opportunity for people to tap into.
"There is still a great wealth of knowledge within the butchery sector and we want to encourage consumers to look to butchers as the experts in their field and come to them for all their meat needs and advice."
National Butchers' Week is sponsored by Eblex, Bpex, Hybu Cig Cymru Meat Promotion Wales, Dalziel, Weddel Swift, Lucas Ingredients, Manchester Rusk Company and Gordon Rhodes (Dalesman).
Keep reading MTJ Extra, and www.meatinfo.co.uk, for all the latest news and updates on National Butchers' Week.
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