Bpex is to launch its biggest generic marketing campaign for pork for six years in a bid to add value to the supply chain.

The £2m campaign which is launching on 3 October will encourage shoppers to consider the welfare standards behind the pork products they buy, using messages such as 'Grill it before you buy it' and 'Pork not porkies'.

The campaign will be advertised on outdoor posters as well as in the national press, women's weeklies, specialist consumer food titles and online.

Consumers will be ­directed to the Love Pork website and Facebook page for more information about the welfare differences between quality-assured Red Tractor pork and pork from other welfare systems.

Visitors to the sites will be encouraged to sign up to a 'pork promise': 'From this day forth I promise to give more thought to the pork on my fork, to think twice about whether it's quality pork produced by farmers who prioritise the wellbeing of their pigs.'

Bpex's latest campaign comes as tensions are once again rising in the relationship between pork producers and retailers.

The National Pig Association last week accused retailers of peddling false excuses to avoid passing a greater share of profit down to farmers. The NPA claimed retailers had refused to ensure that extra revenue from higher retail prices reached pork producers, and instead said poor demand for pork and pork products meant they could not pay producers more.

The NPA also pointed out that contrary to retailer claims the latest sales data showed a pork market in healthy growth, with volume sales of fresh pork up 8.5% year-on-year [Kantar 12w/e 7 August].

"Having increased the price of pork in-store, retailers have failed to pass any of it to producers who continue to make losses while retailers increase their profits," said NPA chairman Stewart Houston.

Bpex said pig farmers were currently losing about £8 per pig, although losses had been as high as £20 per pig in the past 12 months.