‘Love Lamb Week’ Raises Awareness

‘Love Lamb Week’ Raises Awareness
Tyrone countryside. Picture: Cliff Donaldson

For Love Lamb Week 2020, the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) teamed up with the Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC) and the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) Minister Edwin Poots, to provide consumers with an insight into the importance of lamb production and to encourage them to try local lamb.

Lamb production

UFU president Victor Chestnutt said, “Lamb production is an integral part of Northern Ireland’s agricultural industry for various reasons. It’s a delicious product produced to some of the highest standards in the world, it ticks all the boxes for quality, has a short supply chain and is of true local provenance representing the very best of NI produce. Love Lamb Week is a great opportunity for us to focus on sheep production and raise awareness of why it is such an important commodity.

The UK-wide campaign ran from 1 – 7 September to raise awareness of the nutritional factors of having lamb in your diet and the versatility of the red meat product. Popular radio chef Paula McIntyre conducted an online cookery class via Belfast Live, to show consumers how quick and easy it is to make tasty lamb dishes at home as part of Love Lamb Week.

From Farm to Fork

LMC chief executive Ian Stevenson said, “We were proud to be support the Love Lamb Week initiative again which is a great opportunity to showcase the environmental and health benefits of consuming local Northern Ireland Farm Quality Assured lamb. It is an important opportunity to encourage discussion surrounding lamb and to urge consumers to support local farmers, who are working tirelessly to provide a product that can be guaranteed of the highest qualities, from farm to fork.

“Unlike previous years, we were unable to host lamb sampling events in retail stores and promotional activities had to diversify to comply with Covid-19 regulations.

“In a supply chain wide collaboration, local street food restaurateurs, The Hatch will be promoted NIFQA lamb through a speciality dish with a contemporary twist to encourage consumers to get back in touch with lamb. This was an important opportunity to engage with the public and put lamb back on the menu as a versatile, flavoursome and nutritious meat that can be enjoyed all year round and on any day of the week”.

Ministerial support

DAERA Minister Edwin Poots MLA said, “Such is the quality of Northern Ireland lamb that it is one of the absolute benchmarks for our entire range of high-quality agricultural produce. The calibre of care taken by those who rear our lambs is renowned across the globe – yet another reason why it is in a very strong position to compete against other countries when standards are compared by international experts.

“I am very proud to be in the position to play my part in promoting Northern Irish lamb at every given opportunity, safe in the knowledge that I am spreading the word that we can rightly and truly claim to be a world leader in this sector and Love Lamb Week is another chance to do just that.”