With the UK pig industry facing cost-related challenges, Tesco has announced that it will invest £10 million (€11.85 million) in a support package for British pig farmers.
The funding will see Tesco suppliers raise payments to farmers by £6.6 million (€7.82 million) between now and August this year.
Since the start of the year, Tesco has been helping clear the backlog of animals on British farms by buying more pigs.
Commenting, Dominic Morrey, Tesco fresh commercial director, said, "We fully recognise the seriousness of the situation UK pig farmers are facing and have been working closely with our suppliers to understand what more we can do to support the sector. On top of the increased volume of British pork we’re now offering our customers, we will be increasing payments to British pig farmers by £10 million through to August this year.
"We know there is more to do, and we will be working with suppliers, farmers and the wider industry to drive more transparency and sustainability across our supply chains and support the future of the British pig industry”.
The fresh pork, sausages, bacon and cooked meat products of Tesco are all RSPCA Assured and Red Tractor certified.
Compared to 2021, Tesco has increased its British Pork products by 30%.
The company has launched an 'I Love British' brand in its bacon range, and plans to launch a ham product later this month. A 5p per pack contribution will be passed onto farmers in the supply chain.
Initiatives taken to help the British pork industry include adding more fresh British pork products in store (five lines have recently been moved to British supply in recent weeks) and introducing an additional 15 pork promotions in store for customers.
Tesco has committed to review pricing on a more frequent basis, which will provide more flexibility for farmers when market prices change.
A More Sustainable Approach
Commenting, Jim Brisby, chief commercial officer for Tesco pork supplier Cranswick said, “We’ve been working with Tesco to find a more sustainable way of paying our farmers for pigs, and we are pleased with the progress we have made to increase the availability of British pork to Tesco shoppers, and are continuing to work with the team to significantly increase these volumes even further over the next few months.
"The announcement today regarding the increased prices paid to British farmers will also help to support those farmers supplying Tesco.”