More than 60 unique British foods have now achieved protected status to help safeguard these iconic products and deliver a major boost to the economy.
West Country Beef and West Country Lamb have recently joined this illustrious group. They have had their Protected Food Name (PFN) status confirmed by the European Union. They join the ranks of some of the UK's best loved foods such as Welsh Lamb, Melton Mowbray Pork Pies and Stilton cheese. It is estimated that these food items contribute more than £900 million to the European economy.
Peter Baber, Chairman of Meat South West said "We are delighted to be awarded PGI status for West Country Beef and Lamb. We look forward to working with farmers and processors in the South West region to market top quality beef and lamb under the West Country PGI banner."
Jaspers and Dawn Meats have become the first companies to be able to market West Country Beef and Lamb under its new Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) banner. The pair have successfully completed an audit process, which allows them to market PGI products both domestically and for export. The companies demonstrated their ability to meet certain criteria to bear the 'West Country Beef or Lamb' mark. The beef or lamb must be at least 70% forage fed and come from stock born, raised and finished in Cornwall, Devon, Somerset, Gloucestershire, Dorset or Wiltshire.
Rob Venner, Vice Chair of MSW and Managing Partner of Sedgemoor Market, said "It has taken the Board many years to reach this point. We in the West Country all know we produce some of the best beef and lamb in the world due to our unique location and climate. We now have a banner to go forward with and shout out the message of how good our product really is. We are in a global market place and we need all the tools to be able to compete with the likes of Scotch Beef and Welsh Lamb and products from other countries in South America and the Antipodes. I've enjoyed West Country Beef and Lamb all my life. From now on others in the world will be able to similarly enjoy it and know they are eating beef or lamb produced from our beautiful pastures."
We should be grateful if all beef and lamb vendors would familiarise themselves with the specifications required and sign the declaration on our entry form in the space indicated. Further details can be found on the West Country Beef and Lamb website.