M&S bans imported white vealMove follows fears about animal welfare

08 October 2007

A leading retailer is banning imported white veal and calves' liver from its stores, it announced today.

Animal rights campaigners complain that animals bred for this type of meat are reared in small, cramped crates and fed a poor diet.

Marks & Spencer today pledged to sell only rose veal bred in the UK to decent welfare standards.

It will remove all imported white veal from its stores from Wednesday and stock the UK-reared alternative from January.

Calf liver

Calves liver will also be banned from M&S because it comes from animals bred for white veal.

Animal rights campaign group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) says calves bred for white veal are forced to live in cramped crates which restrict their movement and muscle growth.

They are fed a milk diet for their entire lives, which gives their meat its white colour, and are slaughtered at around eight months old.

M&S said the UK-produced rose veal comes from animals reared in well-lit barns and fed a natural diet which meets the welfare standards of both Compassion in World Farming and the RSPCA.

Welfare standards

The chain's director of food Steven Esom said: 'We have banned white veal as we were increasingly unhappy with the animal welfare standards associated with the rearing of calves.'

M&S will source its rose veal from a family-run farm based in Lothian.

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