Age makes a difference Allegations of xenophobia have been flying since before those pork advertisements appeared, and the Meat and Livestock Commission research shows overseas suppliers have some reason to fear hostility from consumers ­ not just from farmers. However, the demographics are significant. "The older consumers are convinced that on the continent things would not be as good ­ the pigs would have less space, far less consideration and it's very likely that if there were any rules they wouldn't be obeyed," according to one of the attitude studies. But age makes a difference: "Among younger respondents, perception is really quite different ­ they imagine the rules and the conditions on the continent are almost identical to those in the UK." This suggests importers have the best sales prospects among the younger, most highly valued consumers. Yet a lesson from the lamb market is of at least some shoppers acquiring more traditional attitudes as they get older. {{MEAT }}

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