The National Farmers Union wants to see an end to the ‘fake farm’ phenomenon, as idyllic food labelling might paint a misleading picture. Are you fed up with fake farms on your food?
Fruit from Rosedene Farms and Suntrail Farms might conjure up images of an idyllic corner of Kent, manned by ruddy-faced British farmers and hay-stuffed scarecrows.
In reality, these farms don’t exist. In fact, you might be getting Rosedene Farms strawberries that are from Morocco, or Suntrail Farms cherries that were grown in Spain. But is it a problem that these farm brands are completely fictional? Surely a Rosedene by any other name would taste as sweet?
Apparently not, at least in the eyes of the National Farmers Union (NFU), which last week complained to Trading Standards about Tesco’s use of fake farm brands.
The NFU said the brands were misleading, as shoppers believe they’re buying British produce when that’s often not the case.
Tesco has been accused of rebranding its Everyday Value line as several different farm ranges as a way to appeal to those who want to support local farmers.
Country of origin
The NFU has also called for better guidance on country of origin labelling on food.
While some of Tesco’s fruit and veg contains a country of origin that you can easily check when you inspect the pack, some shoppers might already have been swayed by the quintessentially British names plastered on the packaging.
Government guidelines on food labelling state that the country of origin must be shown if the food packaging is unclear, for example if the label for a pizza shows the leaning tower of Pisa, but the pizza is made in the UK.
Supermarket chain Aldi, which also came under fire for using fictional farms in its marketing, has promised to only use British produce in its farm brands by 2017.
Is it important for you to know which country your food has come from? And should Tesco follow in Aldi’s footsteps? Do you think Tesco is trying to boost its sales by tapping into the trend of locally-sourced food? Or do you think that the name on the front of the packaging doesn’t matter, as long as the food is of good quality?
Do fake farm brands bother you?
Yes (61%, 1,498 Votes)
I haven’t heard of fake farm brands before (32%, 785 Votes)
No (6%, 157 Votes)
Total Voters: 2,440