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Looking at the African market

Jean-Pierre GarnierJust back from Central Africa, it is worth reflecting on these important markets. After Asia, Africa is the main region where British meat is exported outside Europe. The mission we organised was not for the faint-hearted. For example, this was the first ever British commercial mission to take place in Kinshasa, the metropolis of Central Africa. Visas, immigration procedures and difficult logistics add to the difficulty.

Let’s not solve one problem in bacon by creating another

Terry JonesAhead of the forthcoming negotiations in Brussels on the use of nitrites in meat products, discussions between the FSA and industry are in full swing.

Richard Griffiths

Richard GriffithsRichard Griffiths
Director, Food Policy at British Poultry Council

See Richard Griffith's blog

Making a monster of campylobacter

Richard Griffiths"He who fights with monsters should be careful lest he thereby become a monster. And if thou gaze long into an abyss, the abyss will also gaze into thee." When Nietzsche made this statement he was talking about how we are manipulated by the language and morality we have inherited, in which we unthinkingly create our own fears.

Creating awareness is vital

Sara ElkholyA few months ago now I attended a Halal Meat Conference hosted by AHDB Beef & Lamb. Now I've attended meat and food events and conferences in the past, but never one focused on halal.

Productivity: Faster, Better, and Cheaper

Charles BaughanProductivity is a much used word these days. The media has recently highlighted that our output per hour in the UK is over 30% lower than in the US, Germany and France. Over time new technology and better skills tends to improve productivity, but since 2007 this gap between us and our principle foreign competitors has widened. Now countries like Spain and Italy have not only caught us up but now show better productivity.

How the halal sector presents major opportunities

Dr Phil Hadley's blog articlesThe halal sector adds value to the sheep market in particular and, increasingly, for the cattle market. Halal presents a significant market opportunity, which processors can capitalise on, particularly when it comes to sheep meat.  

Horsegate - the considered view of the AIMS Board of Directors

Norman BagleyThe sorry saga of ‘Horsegate’ may now have staggered to a conclusion. Farmbox pleaded guilty to having goat trim and other low value remnants labelled as mutton or lamb trim. None of this product had been sold as such and it had already been identified by the plant as incorrectly labelled and put aside. Enquiries demonstrated that, at that time, not a single plant in the UK distinguished small volumes of goat from mutton. 

Bill Gates issues pro-meat blog

Former vegetarian and billionaire Bill Gates has backed meat production in his latest blog post, stating you can eat meat and still be environmentally friendly.

Blog discusses halal slaughter

Rizvan Khalid, halal expert and senior director of Shropshire abattoir Euro Quality Lambs, has posted a new blog for entitled “Halal – know your market!”.

Sausage exporter discusses animal welfare

Charles Baughan, from the West Country's Westaways Sausages, has posted his third blog post for, this time addressing the issue of animal welfare.

Animal Welfare, it’s about respecting and valuing animals

Charles BaughanAs an animal lover, I sometimes question how we can bottom out the fact that so many pigs are killed each week to make our sausages. I also find it difficult to give detailed assurance on the welfare of the pigs we use. I should make it clear we use 100% fresh British Pork 100% of the time and we endeavour to use pork from our region where ever possible. All the meat is fully traceable back to the original farm. These farms subscribe to a number of welfare schemes.

Blog argues against beef protectionism

Writing MTJ’s latest blog post, Paul Garnham, MD Europe and Africa for Tyson International, calls for the UK to open up to more foreign beef products.

Drop the xenophobia

Paul GarnhamPaul Garnham, MD Europe and Africa for Tyson International argues that the British retail and farming sectors should less protectionist when it comes to their beef offer and open up to a greater selection of foreign products.

Quality is key to successful beef and lamb sector

Dr Phil Hadley's blog articlesDr Phil Hadley, southern senior regional manager at Eblex, explains why quality improvements must always be to the fore in retaining consumer confidence and maximising returns

Bagley blog reacts to campylobacter results

In the wake of the FSA's latest quarterly campylobacter survey results, the Association of Independent Meat Suppliers' (AIMS) Norman Bagley gives his reaction in our latest blog post.

Campylobacter – after the storm

norman bagleyI get the impression that, before releasing the campylobacter poultry meat supermarket statistics to an expectant world, the Food Standards Agency (FSA) looked over the parapet and had a slight change of heart. It was as if it had suddenly realised that it was set up to prevent food scares by scientifically assessing and communicating food-related risks, not to start hares running.

Blog points to social media benefits

In our latest blog post sausage expert and managing director of Westaways Sausages Charles Baughan talks about the importance of an online business.

Social media, SEO and dynamic user generated interfaces

Charles BaughanCharles Baughan, MD of Westaways Sausages, reveals how embracing social media has streamlined enquiries and made business easier

Fifth quarter’s positive and versatile role

Dr Phil Hadley's blog articlesFifth quarter has increasingly made the headlines in recent weeks, from both an economic and ecological perspective.

Eblex manager highlights fifth-quarter benefits

Phil Hadley, senior regional manager at Eblex, has pointed to the economic and ecological benefits of fifth-quarter products in’s latest blog post.

Bagley accuses Unison of "scaremongering" in latest blog post

Norman Bagley, policy director at the Association of Independent Meat Suppliers (AIMS) accuses Unison of “scaremongering” in his latest blog post for

The future’s bright

Danny LidgateIt is a commonly discussed subject; the average age of a UK butcher seems to be between 50 and 60. I wonder what the average age would have been in 1950 after the war?

NFUS blog reviews outcome of beef summit

NFU Scotland president Nigel Miller has published a blog in which he reflected on the beef crisis summit, and looks at how its recommendations could be implemented.

A lot of ‘hot air’ on beef

norman bagleyWell, guys and dolls, you know you have really arrived when you’ve been invited along with the great and the good (and the less good - meaning me) by the Minister to no less than two hours in London, expelling hot air about how to save the beef industry from its present malaise.

Modernising meat inspection

Andrew RhodesThe Food Standards Agency (FSA) sometimes gets a bad press in Meat Trades Journal and it is often challenging for us, keeping consumers safe and implementing regulations. This is the first blog I’ve written for MTJ and there are many things I could have picked as a topic, but I thought I would start with an important issue that has had a long journey.

Exports – why we should all be doing it

Charles BaughanWe come from the West Country and we think our little corner is a pretty fine place. It has the uplands of the moors, the lush river valleys, the isolated fishing harbours and chocolate box villages. Food and drink is a vital sector, with around 15% of all jobs in the region and some 2,500 companies.

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