Specialist beef and lamb conference returns to the north

The first specialist beef and lamb conference in over a decade is to make a return to the north of England in January 2016. 

The one-day meeting organised by the National Farmers’ Union (NFU) and AHDB Beef & Lamb is set to focus on how producers can stay competitive and meet market challenges in the face of industry pressures.

“There is no doubt 2015 has been a difficult year for everyone in the livestock sector and we face an uphill battle ahead,” said NFU North East livestock board chairman Richard Findlay.

A strong pound, resulting in struggling exports, inconsistent support from retailers and animal health and welfare issues have all contributed towards a challenging year for the industry.

“To make sure farmers are in the best position to respond positively to these challenges, build business resilience and remain competitive we need to understand in detail how our domestic and export markets are shaping up, what consumers really want, how retailers are living up to their commitments and how the industry itself is responding in terms of innovation and promotion,” continued Findlay.

“All this and more will be discussed at our flagship conference, which aims to bring together a wealth of beef and lamb producers from across the north.”

Bill Mellor, chairman of the NFU North West livestock board, added that although it was important to explore export opportunities, the industry must not forget its home market: “We have 70 million people to feed in the UK and we really must engage with them, understand what they want, but also get out and promote not just our product but the innovative new cuts that have been developed to fit modern lifestyles and tastes.”

He said that beef and lamb producers in the north of the country had to delicately balance supply and demand: “There are pressures to produce more, but to do so we have to be sure the demand is there.
This conference will give members the chance to explore just how the market is shaping up for 2016 and question if we are going in the right direction.”

The Northern Beef and Sheep Conference will take place at Scotch Corner Hotel, Darlington on Tuesday 12 January. Booking is essential and can be done by emailing north.east@nfu.org.uk or calling 01904 451550.

Want more stories like this in your inbox?

Sign up for our FREE email newsletter


My Account


Most read


For the third year running, a grain fed cow won the World Steak Challenge. What do you think produces the best beef?