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Ready meals to get Red Tractor seal of approval

Ready meals to get Red Tractor seal of approval

Ready meals being sold in the UK are to be labelled with the Red Tractor logo for the first time to reassure consumers that meat has been sourced from British farms.

The Red Tractor seal of approval was first introduced in 2000 and approximately 78,000 farms have joined the scheme since to let people know their business operates high standards of hygiene, quality, safety, animal welfare and environmental protection.

UK consumers have been increasingly concerned about the origins of food since last year's horse meat scandal, but all beef, chicken, lamb and pork featured in Red Tractor products can be traced back to a British farm where standards are high.

A recent survey conducted by Red Tractor Assurance found that more than half of British shoppers would be more likely to purchase a meat-based ready meal if it was labelled with the logo.

It is already used on some items, such as potatoes, sausages and dairy products, but ready meals and pies have not been included in the scheme until now, as their meat make-up has been deemed too complicated.

Asda is to be the first major store to introduce the logo to its products, with its chilled beef ready meals - such as spaghetti bolognaise, lasagne and cottage pie - being the first to be labelled this month. The scheme will then roll out across the UK throughout the rest of 2014.

Meurig Raymond, deputy president of the National Farmers Union, said: "I am delighted that with the development of the new 'made with' Red Tractor logo there are even more opportunities to highlight the British sourced assured ingredients that our members work so hard to supply to consumers."

Asda's brand director Ade McKeon also commented on the news, saying his company is proud to be working alongside the Red Tractor scheme to help shoppers understand where their food comes from.

The supermarket will not just be using the logo to identify meat, but will also be using Red Tractor sourced potatoes in its ready meals too.


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