Bale-grazing insights, butchery opportunities and abattoir challenges
This two part event in Cheshire, started with a farm walk. We saw the impact of the cow/calf herd on the land, from daily moves and bale grazing throughout the winter season. The field looked in great shape with plenty of seed trodden into the ground to increase biodiversity.
Following a delicious beef lunch, we heard from four speakers, sharing thoughts on post farm gate issues. Rob Bunn explained Pasture for Life and how the new Supply Chain roles, aim to develop local integrated supply chains. Callum Edge, craft butcher and abattoir owner discussed the opportunity to maximise the carcass value, specifically the fifth quarter, through bespoke butchery for producers. Our third speaker explored opportunities for improvement of the small abattoir sector, including new government funding, the introduction of mobile abattoirs, flexibility around current regulations, better communication with the Food Standards Agency and the role of Official Veterinarians (OV’s). We then heard a vets view, reflecting on the poor transport outcomes resulting from the closure of small abattoirs and the need to introduce young vets to regenerative farm practices and best in class abattoirs.
The event was lively with plenty of discussion and a commitment to write to individual MPs to highlight the need for small abattoirs and the need for more flexible regulations.