The Butcher has been a quintessential fixture of the High Street for hundreds of years, but why is it that many of us only visit them so occasionally?
National Butchers’ Week is about to get into full swing again from 14th-20th March and we want to help you understand what a fantastic service they can offer and why you should get to know the rather knowledgeable person behind the block.
For many consumers, the process of buying meat has become somewhat dislocated and quite wasteful, with many of us buying vacuum-packed products, the providence of which we do not always know, and sometimes letting it go to waste because we have brought the wrong product or too much of it. The National campaign aims to turn people back towards their butchers with the knowledge that they are in the best hands for service, expertise and variety.
Far from being more costly, butchers can offer invaluable advice on different cuts to enjoy, such as those suited to low and slow cooking or even meats that you had never attempted to cook at home. They can even give you those off cuts that make a dramatic taste difference to sauces and stocks.
Editor Rod Addy of the Meat Trades Journal, which organises and promotes the week, said: “Never before have butchers been in a better position to capitalise on consumers’ desire to shop outside big mainstream retailers and try out new things. For example, the rise in popularity of eating out over the past few years and the need to save cash has led shoppers to reduce restaurant bills by recreating the dining out experience at home. Butchers, many of whom now supply restaurants directly or offer a restaurant service themselves, are ideally placed to capitalise on that trend.”
Evidence suggests that they are doing so, he added, with independent meat traders increasingly offering ready-to-eat and added-value products requiring less preparation. Others are holding cookery demonstrations to show how consumers can make the most of the meat they buy while not breaking the bank.
If you care about buying meat that has been properly sourced from the best farmers, beautifully in season game or even amazing hand-made sausages, pay a visit to your butcher. After seeing the difference in price and quality you won’t look back.
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