The government needs to start listening to the meat sector according to leaders of a new industry association.

Speaking at the launch of the British Meat Processors Association, co-president Steve Leyman said: “The meat industry generates over £7bn in turnover, so this is not a shoestring organisation and it’s time for the government to start listening.”

The BMPA has been formed by the merger of two of the sector’s leading trade associations, the British Meat Manufacturers Association and the British Meat Federation.

Leyman said the new group would reach across UK slaughtering, processing, manufacturing, wholesale, distribution and packing and
work in close collaboration with organisations such as the MLC. “The BMPA will provide a stronger more focused voice for the industry and act as a focal point for the government and Europe.” He said the move had been prompted by the changes in the industry: “These days the animals go in one end and come out the other processed and packaged. All of our members have increasingly similar, and in some cases overlapping, operations. The merger will allow us to provide an integrated whole chain approach and provide a better service without any duplication of effort or resources.”

He added the move would provide the industry with a more effective voice for influencing legislation both at UK level and in Europe.

The organisation has also launched a new website,, which will provide details about the association as well as up to date information along with specialist knowledge on the sector.

The new association will feature joint co-presidents, Leyman and Anthony Saxby, along with directors Peter Scott and Celia Bennett.
Ed Bedington