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British Food

Volume 456: debated on Thursday 1 February 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what proportion of food served (a) in buildings occupied by his Department and (b) to UK armed forces personnel was of British origin in (i) 2005 and (ii) 2006. (111120)

Information on the proportion of food served of British origin in non-military catering establishments within the Department is not held centrally and can be provided only at disproportionate cost.

The Food Supply Contractor procures approximately 1,200 different products for the UK armed forces. The percentage of UK-produced goods changes regularly as a result of seasonality, value for money incentives, changes to the product specification and supplier. Some products are manufactured using a number of ingredients, others, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, are sourced seasonally from a variety of countries. The information requested is not therefore available.

It is, however, possible to be specific about the proportion of meat sourced from British farms under this arrangement. In financial year 2005-06 under the previous Food Supply Contract 42 per cent. of beef, 100 per cent. of pork and 5 per cent. of the lamb supplied was of British origin. Under the new food supply contract which commenced in October 2006, 55 per cent. of, beef, 100 per cent. of pork and 3 per cent. of lamb by volume has been procured from British farms to date.