Ed Bedington
Beef farmers are set to get a higher profile in Somerfield stores ­ by appearing on their products' labels.
The retailer has introduced a scheme to highlight the name of its farmers of Scotch beef for its premium So Good' range.
Somerfield claims it is the first in the UK to allow its shoppers to have that level of information on packs.
A company spokesman said: "Consumers have voiced their opinion on the need to improve labelling and this unique step takes things even further ­ guaranteeing shoppers absolute authenticity, quality and traceability."
He added that the scheme would soon be rolled out to lamb and pork products as well.
The first farmer to be named by the retailer was Keith Stewart from Huntly in Aberdeenshire. He said: "I welcome the move and encourage others to follow in Somerfield's footsteps."
Meanwhile, the retailer is also extending its microwaveable meats range with the launch of a chicken and bacon casserole option. The range, launched last year, already includes lamb shank in minted gravy, bbq ribs, steak and onion casserole and lamb and leek.
Charlotte Berry, Somerfield's poultry buyer, said the range was performing exceptionally well, which was why they had decided to extend it.
"Both the minted lamb shank and bbq ribs have proved extremely popular. We've even had people write in about them.
"We've been running a multi-buy promotion on the range, two for £5, and have seen sales grow by 300%."
The dishes, marketed as microwaveable meats, are previously slow cooked and tenderised which, Berry said, offers a high quality alternative to ready meals.