AS part of our work promoting Welsh meat to consumers in the UK market and communicate the strengths of the Welsh brands, HCC conducts research to help identify public attitudes.
A recent opinion poll of 1 ,5 0 0 UK adults, conducted by respected market research specialists BMG Research and designed to be demographically representative of the population, gives us a range of findings; some challenging, but a great many of them positive.
While some of the figures will be used in order to help combat some of the negative press stories issued by red meat’s enemies, a number of the headline results have already been released.
Importantly, consumers overall have very positive views of the high standards to which meat is produced in Britain, and they’re concerned that Brexit may lead to lower‐quality imports.
53 per cent of respondents to the poll said that they were somewhat or very concerned about the impact of Brexit on the quality of the food they eat, whereas only 8 per cent were not at all concerned.
When asked about Welsh meat, 79 per cent correctly identified that livestock in Wales was mostly grass‐fed,
and our production methods also stacked up favourably when compared with our competitors.
Prospective UK consumers ranked home‐produced meat top when asked to rank different countries’ farming standards when it came to their
impact on the environment.
Welsh and English farming were perceived as
more sustainable than farming in the USA, South America, New Zealand and Australia.
This finding may be important in attracting future consumers. Overall, British buyers regard cost and quality as the two most important factors in their purchasing decisions, but among the younger age groups were noticeably more concerned about the green
credentials of their food.
The positive findings of the poll reflect other research by Welsh Government and others who have found that the Welsh Lamb brand in particular is very strong across the UK, in terms of the public’s perceptions of its quality,
sustainability and traceability.
Many of HCC’s poll findings have already been made
public, and strengthened our engagement with the UK food industry at recent key events such as IFE in London, Blas Cymru / Taste Wales at Celtic Manor, and a series of supermarket engagement activities in conjunction with Welsh Government.