Recent independent market research has revealed that eight out of ten Scots (78%) regularly look to buy Scotch Beef PGI and 85% feel Scotch Beef is a brand they can trust.

The strength of trust in the brand is also evident in London where 55% of those who buy Scotch Beef trust the brand.

Market research, conducted by IGD on behalf of Quality Meat Scotland, has also shown that Scotch Beef logo awareness is sitting at 85% in Scotland and country of origin ranks highest as a “quality indicator” for both quality fresh lamb and pork with consumers in Scotland.

Quality assurance schemes, such as those behind the Scotch Beef PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork brand, also ranked as a quality indicator for respondents. Over 90% of Scotland’s breeding cattle population, around 80% of breeding sheep and almost 100% of significant pig farming businesses are members of QMS farm assurance schemes.

Alan Clarke, Chief Executive of Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) said that whole of life, whole of supply chain assurance is essential for the Scotch brands to continue to flourish on a UK and world stage.

“Consumers are increasingly interested in where their food comes from and its environmental footprint. They want to be reassured that the meat they are buying has been reared to the highest standards on farms which provide excellent animal welfare – our brands provide this through our assurance schemes,” said Mr Clarke.

“Through our contractor Lloyds Register, QMS undertake hundreds of quality assurance inspections each year accompanied by a Scottish SPCA inspector. Our collaborative partnership with the Scottish SPCA, which is non-commercial, is completely unique and provides consumer reassurance that the products that they are buying are from animals that have been respectively reared.”

Mr Clarke added that QMS has recently strengthened its cattle and sheep assurance standards to introduce a further programme of planned spot checks in order to manage reputational risk, provide assurance to consumers and enhance the ongoing credibility of our brands and assurance schemes.

Planned spot checks are part of an on-going focus on farms which have, on several occasions, failed to meet full compliance with key risk standards. The existing process which sees spot checks undertaken where concerns are raised about a farm which is in the scheme, will also continue.

“The Scots were the first in the world to introduce quality assurance schemes to underpin our standards of red meat production and we are very proud of what the industry has achieved,” said Mr Clarke. “Any poor practice within the Scottish red meat supply chain is unacceptable and could potentially damage the world-class brands that the industry has worked hard to develop.”

The QMS quality assurance standards are available to view online by visiting the QMS website.

Profitability and efficiency improvements unveiled at final Monitor Farm meeting

Farmers in Lochaber are invited to attend the final monitor farm meeting at Strone Farm on 20th February to hear first-hand about the changes that have resulted in an increase in profitability and efficiency on the 1200-hectarre livestock farm.

Run by Chris Cameron in partnership with his father Malcolm, the family run 500 North Country Cheviot Ewes and a herd of 40 breeding Limousin cows in their farm at Great Glen, one of Scotland’s highest rainfall areas.

The Lochaber Monitor Farm is one of nine monitor farms that have been established around Scotland in a joint initiative by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds. The aim of the programme, which is funded by Scottish Government, is to help improve the productivity, profitability and sustainability of Scottish farm businesses.

The meeting on Thursday 20 February will be held at Strone Farm near Banavie, Fort William PH33 7PB and will begin at 12.00 noon. Lunch will be provided. The meeting is expected to finish by 4.30pm. All are welcome and the event is free.

For further information and to book your place (and lunch) please contact SAC Consulting on 01631 563093 or