An importer is hoping to create a new niche for Dutch veal with the launch of bacon-style veal rashers.
Jeffrey Davies, of Jeffrey Davies and Davies, said he was in negotiations with retailers to stock the new product.
The range, which consists of both smoked rashers and lardons, has been created by leading Dutch supplier Peter’s Farm following 12 months’ development work.
The company already has listings for veal products in both Waitrose and Tesco.
Davies said the new products were an excellent way to add value and also get better carcase utilisation for veal.
“It’s easy to sell the things like chops, but it’s very difficult to
sell the things like flanks and briskets.”
However, he said he did not see the rashers going on sale alongside bacon: “Bacon is a commodity product, and 98% of people have it on their shopping list. The rashers are very much aimed at the top end of the market in terms of quality and taste.
“Although the veal rashers undergo the same curing process, it’s a different product to bacon. We are not looking for it to be a substitute for bacon but as a product in its own right.”
Meanwhile, the Dutch Meat Board is continuing with its pilot project to promote Dutch veal.
Robert Smith, MD of the DMB, said the campaign was going well with interest being high.
The project was launched last year in a bid to dispel myths about Dutch veal production. “There’s still this perception that welfare is an issue. People still have an image of crates.”
However, Smith said, companies like Peter’s Farm were driving the agenda on veal production with ground-breaking welfare techniques. He said they had been speaking to processors and wholesalers, but were also due to talk to retailers.
Ed Bedington