News that one of Britain’s largest supermarkets, Aldi, has committed to stocking a brand new range of PGI Welsh Beef products across over 50 stores, has been hailed as a much needed boost for the industry.
Speaking after the official announcement was made in Cardiff (Monday, 10 February) Farmers’ Union of Wales Deputy President Ian Rickman said: “This is a most welcome step in the right direction. Given the uncertainty our farmers face over future trade deals, supporting local suppliers is key to ensuring we have thriving, sustainable family farms here in Wales.
“Farmers in Wales produce excellent, sustainable, quality PGI Welsh Beef and PGI Welsh Lamb and we are confident shoppers won’t be disappointed by the new range. I can only encourage other supermarkets, restaurants, cafe’s and anyone else who is involved in the food supply chain to follow suit.”
From Tuesday, 12 February a range of thirteen different products, including a selection of Fillet, Ribeye and Sirloin Steaks, both 28 and 21 Day matured, as well as roasting joints and diced beef, will be available in over 50 stores across Wales.
The Deputy President also used the opportunity to remind the Welsh Government that the decision to leave the EU presents an opportunity to revisit procurement laws and policies.
“Aldi is setting an outstanding example with their commitment and I urge the Welsh and UK Government to remember that we now have an opportunity to revisit procurement laws and policies in a way which ensures public bodies also lead by example in terms of supporting local, Welsh and UK food and farming businesses.
“We must place further emphasise on the benefits of local procurement and work to ensure that the principles laid down in the Plan for Local Procurement are adhered to in a way which results in investment in and benefits to UK businesses.
“It can’t be stressed enough that we need to instigate procurement policies which encourage the creation of new companies and cooperatives which allow smaller businesses to tender for procurement, in order to bring benefits in terms of local employment and redressing imbalances that currently exist throughout the supply chain.”