FARMING MATTERS: Banging the drum for British beef

Ladies in Beef co-founders Minette Batters and Jilly Greed
Ladies in Beef co-founders Minette Batters and Jilly Greed

This is Great British Beef Week when we are all urged to eat, promote and talk about it.

Now in its ninth year, the week is spearheaded by Ladies in Beef, a group of more than 150 female beef farmers from across the country.

During the week, Red Tractor assured thin cut beef steaks will be promoted using new international themed recipes as a way of highlighting the fact that beef forms a key part of some of the world’s most popular dishes.

Ladies in Beef co founder Jilly Greed, who farms 200 suckler beef cows and young stock on water meadows said: “We want to use Great British Beef Week to set the record straight on grass based beef and its many environmental and health benefits.

“Almost half of the UK’s many breeds of cattle are managed on our mountains, moorlands, marshes and wetland marches, land which cannot be used for intensive production.

“Here, suckler beef herds are a vital part of the landscape management to maintain the critical carbon sink for damaging greenhouse gases.

“The beef industry needs to find its voice to counter misinformation about our sector.

“Great British Beef Week gives us a tremendous opportunity to bang the drum for our wonderful farmers.”

Around 475,000 people are employed in farming in the UK and the beef and veal industries are worth around £3 billion to the UK economy.

Ms Greed added: “Beef is naturally rich in protein, contains haem iron which is easily absorbed and provides eight vitamins and minerals which contribute towards good health and wellbeing. We need to make it known more widely that beef is an important and healthy part of the global diet.”

Approximately 47 per cent of all cattle within the UK are managed in Less Favoured Areas, land that the EU has classified as being disadvantaged through having particularly challenging terrain and climates which can pose challenges for growing crops.

The Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution (R.A.B.I.) is the Great British Beef Week’s campaign charity partner.

R.A.B.I. is the farming sector’s oldest and largest charity, and gave out more than £2 .2 million to farming people in hardship last year.