Episode 50: Is Brexit working for the meat sector? With Nick Allen

Posted: 22 March 2024 | | No comments yet

CEO of the British Meat Processors Association Nick Allen talks through the most important challenges facing the meat sector in 2024.

This episode of Food to Go is brought to you by Merck Life Science. Explore the possibilities and learn more about Merck’s contribution to this exciting field at www.sigmaaldrich.com/CulturedMeat

Josh and Grace travel to London to speak to Nick Allen, CEO of the British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) and discuss the myriad problems his members are facing within the meat sector. 

From strained import and export processes, labour shortages and controversial trade deals, Nick takes you through the issues which really matter to the food and beverage sector and explains why in its current form, Brexit is not working for the BMPA’s members. 

Nick, would you say that for your members, Brexit isn’t something that is working for them?

Nick Allen: No. I would say all our membership have seen since Brexit is increased cost, and sooner or later that cost has to be picked up by someone. Either the farmer gets paid less, or that cost has to come out or the consumer has to pay more for it or it eats into their margins. And probably the evidence at the moment is that actually the processes are taking a hit at the moment of the increased costs because of that shortage of supply of livestock, they’re having to pay some of the highest prices they’ve ever paid for livestock.

So at the moment the processor is actually picking up the tab for a lot of the increased cost.

Do you think consumers are going to have to get used to paying more for their meat in the future?

NA: It’s a very unpopular thing to say, but sadly, over the years actually the consumers got used to cheap food and they’ve paid too little for the cost of it. And it’s been supported over the years by government policy, by the common agricultural policy that actually helped farmers stay in business…

But I feel the reality is if people in this country can’t afford food, that’s a societal problem. It’s not something the supply chain should have to pay the bill for. Government should actually address those issues. We should strive to have an economy where everyone can afford food, not actually the food supply chain have to produce it cheaply to support what’s going on in society.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *