LONDON — Hog farmers, meat processors, retailers and the British government have agreed to work on areas of common concern for the benefit of consumers and the industry. Seventeen members of the new Pig Meat Supply Chain Task Force, set up to identify the biggest challenges faced by the industry and suggest solutions, met for the first time March 17.

The task force is working to improve the resilience of the supply chain by investigating how a standardized code of practice for clearer labeling could be introduced; improving pig herd health; examining how to increase the amount of produce reared to higher British welfare standards bought through Public Sector procurement; and addressing the regulatory burden on the supply chain.

"It’s fitting that the task force should meet for the first time during Bacon Connoisseurs’ Week," said Jane Kennedy, Farming Minister. "I’m extremely encouraged by the fact that all sections of the supply chain — from producers to retailers — want to get round the table and see what improvements can be made.

"I want the group to improve things for consumers and the supply chain by delivering on issues like clearer labeling, better pig health and greater public sector procurement of higher welfare products. The industry needs action and results," she added.

The task force will work on projects over the next 12 months. At the end of this time, there will be a review to determine whether it should continue.

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