UK retailers should sell meat on the basis of the best cooking method, not by the name of the cut, according to a leading Australian expert.

Rod Polkinghorne, who runs a successful beef retail outlet in Albert Park, Melbourne, and is an adviser to Meat & Livestock Australia, also said that it was better to grade individual cuts than it was to grade carcases.

Polkinghorne said: "Consumers don't buy carcases; they buy meat cuts. Cuts from a carcase can be very variable."

In his own butchers, called Polkinghornes, beef was sold with a star-based quality rating and according to the best cooking method for that cut. He said he had seen sales grow 15 to 20% year-on-year since introducing the system.

Polkinghorne, who aims to re-establish the direct link between the farmer and the customer, has developed a system which makes it easy to grade individual cuts. He added: "We're selling a result. The consumer doesn't really want a topside; they just want a really good roast."