Recent studies at the University of Adelaide have shown the consumer has a significant influence on ethical meat production, according to ABC Rural.
What consumers choose in the supermarket has a significant effect on farming, particularly ethical meat production. On the basis of these studies, the Cattle Council of Australia has stated there needs to be a better understanding of the customer’s point of view in order for the industry to continue to grow and be successful.
Organic meat suppliers aim for production methods that are more natural and maintain healthy land and animals. Keeping the market in mind leads to a closer inspection of the entire process of ethical production, starting at the producer and ending with the customer.
The article states there could be an upgrade of Australia’s ethical food policy. The policies on industry groups, farmers and food production is lacking, according to Wendy Umberger Director of Global Food Studies.
One way the policy could change is the use of terms. Price and certifications are two areas that could be better attuned to customer needs. Terms are supposed to provide the customer with information about the product and its certifications, but currently the retailer still doesn’t necessarily know what ‘organic’, ‘grain fed’ and ‘free range’ means in relation to what they can see in the supermarket, states Mrs Umberger.
Jed Matz, chief executive of the Cattle Council of Australia, highlighted how more producers are releasing products with “a story” – products like those that are grass fed or free range organic, where it is known the animal lived a healthy life.
There is also an acknowledgement by Mr Matz that the certified organic conditions need to be consistently met so consumers can trust the label.