Beef Week was another great success according to organiser the Livestock and Meat Commission for Northern Ireland. The main aim of the UK wide campaign was to encourage consumers to purchase locally produced beef and incorporate it as part of a healthy, balanced diet.
In Northern Ireland the initiative centred around a week of promotional activity on television, social media and four live cookery demonstrations and sampling sessions were hosted in Asda Antrim, Asda Portadown, Tesco Bentrim and Tesco Knocknagoney stores, where farmers from the Ulster Farmers Union (UFU) and a representative from ABP Food Group were on hand to engage with consumers.
Speaking about the initiative, LMC’s Education Services Manager Cherrie Kenny said: “We’re delighted with how Beef Week went this year, especially with the consumer engagement during our in-store sampling sessions.
“At the beginning of this initiative we wanted to show Northern Ireland consumers how easy and versatile beef is to cook with.
“We also wanted to educate local consumers about what they should be looking out for when shopping and to encourage them to support our beef farmers.
“Quality and cost are important factors that resonate with consumers and we were able to show shoppers how they can make affordable meals of excellent nutritional value using beef produced in Northern Ireland.
“There was plenty of discussion and engagement with LMC, local farmers representing the UFU and ABP Food Group who were present on all four days of demonstrations, which was very encouraging to see.
“Going forward, it’s vitally important that consumers continue to support our high quality Northern Ireland Farm Quality Assured (NIFQA) produce with the uncertainty Brexit is currently causing our industry.
“We have excellent quality beef which is produced on our doorstep and LMC will continue to use its resources to maximum effect to support the industry.”
David Brown, UFU Deputy President, said: “As farmers we appreciate the loyalty of local consumers towards our products – and that was certainly confirmed by the success of this campaign.
“We have a great story to tell about the quality of the beef we produce – and we enjoyed having the opportunity to tell people what makes our beef special. In short, it was a chance to tell people that when they buy local, they are making the best possible decision for themselves and their families.”
Joe McDonald from Asda added: “Asda was delighted to support Beef Week and welcome LMC, UFU, ABP Food Group and local beef farmers to our Antrim and Portadown stores.
“We have a strong commitment to NIFQA produce and when our customers buy NIFQA beef products, they can be sure the beef they are purchasing has been produced to the highest quality standards.”