Demand for Beef Falling in GB

UK - The latest GB household consumption survey conducted by the market researchers Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS) reports a four per cent decrease in demand for beef for the 12 week period ending 15 June 2008, compared to the equivalent period in 2007. According to a Livestock and Meat Commission (LMC) bulletin, rising prices and the gloomy economic outlook for the UK have contributed to the fall in sales.
calendar icon 11 July 2008
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Demand for beef contracted because the average number of households purchasing beef decreased by one per cent and the average volume of beef purchased fell by three per cent. Total expenditure on beef increased by three per cent to £368 million for the 12 week period, as a seven per cent rise in the average retail price more than offset the decrease in the volume of beef sales. Demand for stewing and minced beef increased by 18 and 8 per cent respectively compared to the same period in 2007, but the volume of steaks and roasts dropped by 13 and 24 per cent. These findings agree with anecdotal reports of consumers ‘trading down’ in their beef purchases. Sales of the lower priced cuts of beef are rising, replacing purchases of the more expensive cuts of beef. While the average retail price has risen by seven per cent in GB the average farmgate price in GB has increased by 33 per cent. This has squeezed processor margins, which has made the overall beef trading environment more difficult.

Figures for the 4 week period ending 15 June 2008 show a nine per cent decrease in the volume of beef bought in GB. The average retail price for beef increased by nine per cent, which meant that there has been no change to total household expenditure on beef compared to the same 4 week period in 2007 at £113 million. The number of households purchasing beef fell by three per cent and there was a seven per cent fall in the average weekly purchase. Sales of minced and stewing beef grew by three and two per cent respectively, but a five per cent decrease in sales of steaks and a 30 per cent drop in roasts, led to the overall reduction.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

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