Beef, lamb and pork industry news
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Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board
Abattoir and Meat Processor News

The latest updates from the beef, lamb and pork industry

December 2020

If you have any feedback, or if there are any specific topics you want to hear more about, let us know.

Change programme and strategy 2021–2026

We are embarking on major change at AHDB to improve value for levy payers.

New international trading arrangements, leaving the EU, environmental and sustainability concerns, changes to UK farm and land policy, and significant shifts in consumer behaviour will impact us all. AHDB is committed to change to better support you and your business to meet these challenges.
AHDB Strategy key bullets
Our key areas of work will be:
  • Bringing data, insight and analysis together in an easy-to-use format to help farmers, growers and supply chains make better business decisions
  • Helping farming and growing businesses reduce their environmental footprint to meet future policy and consumer needs
  • Investing in targeted research to tackle current and future pests, weeds and diseases
  • Helping levy payers, industry and researchers share technical information and best practice through our Farm Excellence network and skills development
  • Unlocking and making the most of export opportunities to grow markets for British produce
  • Promoting our industry and building the reputation of its products at home and overseas
Have your say
The strategy and proposed sector plans are published for consultation and can be found online at:

You can feed back on the AHDB strategy using our online form, or to feed back via email, please send your response to

Medicine Hub to be released in January

The Medicine Hub is an easy-to-use web-based platform, which allows users and authorised third parties to securely record and store their antibiotic usage data online. It builds on the successful adoption of the AHDB electronic Medicine Book (eMB) across the pork sector, which has recorded a 60% reduction in the use of antibiotics across 94% of finished pigs. 

The Medicine Hub has been developed to support the ruminant industry to identify and track usage across dairy, beef and sheep sectors, and demonstrate responsible antibiotic usage. It will also enable processors to request antibiotic usage data from their farmers who are using the system, meaning they can report usage along the supply chain in an accurate and consistent format.

The ruminant sectors can then work towards their targets for antibiotic use that have been set in collaboration with the Responsible Use of Medicines in Agriculture Alliance (RUMA). Find out more: 

Defending red meat’s reputation

The red meat and dairy sectors have invested £1.5 million in a TV-led marketing campaign to protect meat and dairy’s role in a healthy, balanced diet.

With numerous fad diets swimming around social media, on 4 January 2021, we’re taking a stance to represent an authentic, positive and healthy image of pork, dairy, beef and lamb.

The campaign’s goal is to continue to improve the reputation and perceptions of the industry in terms of human health and the environment. The ultimate aim is to change consumers' hearts and minds by providing them with the facts and reassuring them that the foods they enjoy – red meat and dairy – can play a role in a healthy and sustainable balanced diet.

Keep an eye out for upcoming marketing activity at, or listen to our podcast exploring the nitty-gritty details of our first £1.5 million cross-sector marketing campaign, out on 11 December (

Tasting events target North American market

During October, beef and pork from the UK were served up in the United States of America and Canada as part of a series of virtual red meat tasting events targeting the North American market.

At the events, chefs and butchers, along with importers, distributors and wholesalers, were presented with tasters to showcase the exceptional taste and quality of our beef and pork. 
Red meat
There were butchery presentations by AHDB’s Martin Eccles, and a run-through of recipes by AHDB’s Food Communications Manager Denise Spencer-Walker.

The events also provided processors with an opportunity to speak directly with potential buyers and influencers about the high welfare standards and production processes here in the UK.

Find out more about our export work.

#MuckFreeTruck update

You may recall the #MuckFreeTruck campaign launched by AHDB and the National Pig Association (NPA) last year, designed to promote thorough cleaning and disinfection of livestock vehicles.
MuckFreeTruck sticker image

The campaign also involved a haulier survey in which we asked for feedback on lorry-wash facilities at abattoirs and markets to identify areas of good practice and where improvements could be made.

One popular suggestion was for a specific lorry wash training module that could be included in all haulier CPC training. This would include a 'hazard perception' style walk-through of best-practice lorry washing, current disease threats and disease prevention guidance, followed by a series of questions. As well as being incorporated into existing training, it could also be used as a stand-alone module for refresher training.

Filming of the module has been delayed due to coronavirus restricting plant access, but we hope to launch early in the new year. Meanwhile, you can find more information on the #MuckFreeTruck campaign here.


A changing market landscape: what behavioural changes has coronavirus driven for red meat?

Following an extraordinary few months, we recently held a webinar during which our retail and consumer insight team reviewed how the market and consumers have changed, and what opportunities and threats this presents. You can catch up by watching the recording on demand
Consumer insight webinar screenshot - retail
As part of the webinar, we discussed the demand outlook for the red meat sector and how economic factors will impact the market.

Listen to the AHDB podcast

Have you subscribed to our podcast?

We’ve covered a variety of topics, including marketing campaigns, export activity and market outlooks.

Listen online or subscribe via any podcast app.
Podcast image