Put sustainable, delicious lamb on your table this Christmas, says NSA

16th December 2019

As shoppers prepare to head out to supermarkets to start their big Christmas food shop, the National Sheep Association (NSA) is suggesting consumers try a different and very delicious meat during the festive period this year.

In a break from the traditional offerings of turkey or goose, NSA says that adding lamb or mutton to your Christmas tables this year could mean giving your friends and family a fantastic treat with a meat that is packed with nutrients and is produced using traditional methods, shaping our beautiful countryside by the nation’s hard-working sheep farmers.

NSA Chief Executive Phil Stocker comments: “With Christmas and New Year celebrations almost upon us, there is no better time to enjoy some of the UK’s most sustainably produced meat. If a roast leg of lamb cannot tempt you away from your turkey on Christmas day perhaps consider a slow cooked lamb tagine or curry over the holidays, perfect to enjoy after a boxing day walk or a busy day catching up with family.”

NSA’s suggestion to add sheep meat to festive tables comes just after the launch of its Heritage Breeds project, an initiative that aims to introduce the UK consumer to the fantastic flavour and enjoyable eating experiences that are available to us in the UK from the huge number of sheep breeds found in the UK, including 60 native breeds offering wonderful variety to the consumer. 

NSA Communications Officer, Katie James, explains: The Heritage Sheep proposal is based on informing consumers about the ‘ABC’ of sheep meat. This is the Age and Breed of the sheep and the area of Countryside where it has been farmed. These factors really do give variety to those looking to enjoy sheepmeat so why not visit your local butcher this Christmas to ask about the produce’s origins. The information the butcher can give you will likely highlight the reduced food miles of locally produced meat, and is therefore another good reason to choose lamb or mutton as we are reminded of our need to change our habits to help our environment.”

Mr Stocker continues: “One of the biggest news stories of 2019 has undoubtedly been our need to consider the environment in our consumer habits. Despite much of this news suggesting red meat is a contributor to climate change more recent research is now evidencing the fact that traditional pasture based grazing systems such as that adopted by the majority of the UK’s sheep farmers can actually be part of a wider solution to this serious problem. Free range, extensively produced sheepmeat is a great choice year-round, and especially at times of celebration such as Christmas.”

Further information about the NSA Heritage Sheep Project can be found at www.nationalsheep.org.uk/heritagesheep