Tesco to source more meat from the UK

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LONDON (ShareCast) - Tesco (Other OTC: TSCDY - news) 's Chief Executive, Phil Clarke, said Wednesday that the company will purchase more of its meat from the UK and reassured investors that its sales had suffered only a 'minimal' impact as a result of the horsemeat scandal.

In an interview with Sky News, the head of the supermarket chain said: "We feel the need to bring the food closer to home. We think it's right to bring more of it back to the UK, so long as we can get the demand from the UK."

The group revealed it plans to source all its fresh chicken from British farms by July, followed by frozen and ready meals in the future.

Speaking at the National Farmers Union on Wednesday, Clarke (Toronto: CKI.TO - news) was expected to say: "We are already the biggest customer of UK agriculture, with all our beef - fresh, frozen and in ready meals - coming from UK and Ireland (OTC BB: IRLD - news) farms. But we can do much more."

The President of the Union opened his address by saying the supermarkets need to source more from British farmers.

"It's clear that the longer a supply chain and the more borders it crosses the less traceable our food is and the more the chain is open to negligence at best, fraud and criminal activity at worst," President Peter Kendall said.

"We now need the supermarkets to stop scouring the world for the cheapest products they can find and start sourcing high-quality, traceable product from farmers here at home."