The National Beef Association has welcomed the Red meat Industry Forum report highlighting the potential to cut cross-industry costs by up to 10% (The Grocer September 20 p66).

But it has pointed out that while it is essential for all parts of the supply chain to make themselves more competitive by being more efficient, the UK’s key processors and and retailers should still remember that profitable domestic production is critical.

NBA chief executive Robert Forster said: “Consumers will be encouraged to remain loyal to home produced food through greater price competition. However CAP reform will place new emphasis on income drawn from the market.

“Put simply market returns will have to be better than they are now, otherwise many beef farmers will react by cutting back production or switching to other disciplines.”