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Schools drop processed meat from meals

25 March 2013

Schools in Staffordshire are taking part in a trial in which processed meat is no longer used in lunchtime meals. Almost a quarter of all primary and secondary schools across Lichfield and Burntwood are now using only locally sourced fresh meat. 

The success of the pilot means that all schools will make the switch by the summer term.
Staffordshire County Council – which provides meals to 87% of schools across the region – had removed processed beef as a precautionary measure following the national horsemeat scandal. But the move to source produce locally has been welcomed by farmers.

John Mercer, NFU regional director (pictured), said: “We applaud the efforts being made by the council to ensure meat is sourced locally, from farm to butcher to school.

“We are delighted NFU members are involved and that by the summer they will be helping to feed thousands of children by providing great tasting ingredients for school dinners.

“Staffordshire farmers work to exceptionally high standards, their industry is strictly regulated and the quality food they produce reflects that.

“We would urge others to follow Staffordshire County Council’s example by demanding better, sourcing county produce when they can, supporting county farmers, butchers and the regional economy.”

The pilot scheme will be rolled out to a further 95 Staffordshire schools after the Easter holidays with all schools serving fresh meat by July.

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