The Co-operative is switching all of its Truly Irresistible beef range in England, Wales and Northern Ireland to Hereford cattle – one of the oldest native breeds which used to be common over 100 years ago.
The move means more herds of the distinctive, white-faced cows will be seen roaming the pastures, exactly as they did decades ago.
The Co-operative’s head of chilled, Matt Hood: “Hereford cattle are part of Britain’s history. Hereford beef takes us back to meat with the flavours our grandparents knew -to give our customers the top quality they want today.”
Hereford cows get their name from the county of Herefordshire where the breed was first established in the eighteenth century.
According to The Co-operative, they are famed for the top quality of their meat. Fine marbling provides juicy flavours and each bite has a characteristic texture found in no other breed.
So highly regarded was the breed that Hereford cattle have, in the past, been exported to countries all over the world.
As a result of The Co-operative’s decision, herds of Hereford cattle will be established all over Britain, boosting the numbers available considerably.
The Co-operative, which has almost 4,000 Co-operatives stores across the UK, said the move will provide an economic boost for farmers all over the country.
Until now, most major retailers have stocked premium meat from Aberdeen Angus cattle.
The unique, Scottish-reared, black-coloured breed will continue to be provided to Co-operative customers in Scotland, where it has a loyal following.
The Co-operative has a strong history of promoting meat and poultry produced in the UK, and all its fresh beef, pork, chicken and turkey is 100% British.
Hood said: “Sourcing so much of our meat from UK farms means we can be sure that we are providing our customers with the best quality available.
“We have complete traceability for every single animal, so that we know precisely where it comes from, and how it has been reared and cared for.
“Returning to Hereford cattle will safeguard the heritage of this wonderful British breed for the future, whilst enabling us to provide our customers with outstanding, great-tasting beef.”