The NFU has raised significant concerns over the pressure that the Better Chicken campaign is placing on the food and poultry sector.
The union believes that the ‘significant progress’ the industry has made in recent times is not being recognised by activist groups or those promoting the Better Chicken Commitment.
“Whilst the Better Chicken campaign rightly calls for the industry to continuously scrutinise and improve its standards, it does not recognise the advancements that have been made in poultry farming and fails to reflect on the latest scientific evidence,” states the union in a report on the poultry section of its website.
“For example, poultry meat farms in the UK implement stocking densities that are far lower than the EU requirements, antibiotic use has declined by over 80% in the past six years in the poultry meat sector thanks to the support of responsible use principles which encourage the farmers and their vets to refine, replace and reduce antibiotics on farm, and advancements in genetics have resulted in bird health improvements.”
Claiming that a recent surge in farm break-ins and undercover reporting is designed to undermine the high standards linked to modern poultry farming, the union added that continuous improvement is a key aim of the sector and something it takes very seriously. It also stated that it’s important that further progress is achieved through a scientific approach and with due consideration for customer demand.
Access full NFU comment here