Scotch Lamb for St An­drew’ s

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - NEWS - BY GEMMA MACKEN­ZIE

A cam­paign to make Scotch Lamb the na­tional dish for St An­drew’s Day cel­e­bra­tions is gain­ing sup­port across the coun­try.

The ini­tia­tive – #Lamb­forStAn­drewsDay – was orig­i­nally thought up by United Auc­tions (UA) man­ag­ing di­rec­tor, Ge­orge Purves, and La­nark sheep farmer Wil­lie Mitchell, in 2010.

Last month Mr Purves re­launched the cam­paign

“Make de­li­cious Scotch Lamb the na­tional dish for St An­drew’s Day”

and urged UA cus­tomers to en­cour­age friends, fam­ily and neigh­bours to put lamb on the menu on Novem­ber 30.

To aid the cam­paign, UA, which op­er­ates auc­tion marts across Scot­land in­clud­ing Stir­ling, Huntly, Lairg and South Uist, has of­fered clubs, schools and or­gan­i­sa­tions the chance to ap­ply to re­ceive one of 10 lo­cally-sourced lambs if they want to host a St An­drew’s Day cel­e­bra­tion.

Mr Purves said more than 1,500 peo­ple have now com­mit­ted to cel­e­brate St An­drew’s Day with Scotch Lamb.

“The aim of this cam­paign is sim­ple: we want to make Scotch Lamb syn­ony­mous with cel­e­brat­ing St An­drew’s Day,” said Mr Purves.

His plea has been backed by var­i­ous in­dus­try lead­ers.

R u r a l E c o n o m y Sec­re­tary, Fergus Ewing, said: “Scotch Lamb to cel­e­brate St An­drew’s Day is the per­fect union, and I would en­cour­age ev­ery­one to get be­hind this great cam­paign and sup­port your lo­cal hill and up­land farm­ers and crofters.”

Qual­ity Meat Scot­land (QMS), which over­sees and pro­motes the Scotch Lamb brand, also backed the cam­paign.

The levy body’s chief ex­ec­u­tive, Alan Clark, said: “We’re en­cour­ag­ing ev­ery­one in Scot­land to get this great tast­ing and ex­tremely ver­sa­tile prod­uct on the menu so that, from now on, when we think about cel­e­brat­ing St An­drew’s Day, we think of Scotch Lamb.”

NFU Scot­land pres­i­dent An­drew McCor­nick en­cour­aged ev­ery­one in the sheep in­dus­try to pro­mote the cam­paign.

He said: “We should all take the op­por­tu­nity to en­joy the best on Scot­land’s na­tional day of cel­e­bra­tion. To­gether we can make de­li­cious Scotch Lamb PGI the na­tional dish for St An­drew’s Day.”

Events or­gan­ised to co­in­cide with the cam­paign in­clude a butch­ery demon­stra­tion and cel­e­bra­tion lunch at

Bal­fron High School; a spe­cial St An­drew’s Day din­ner fea­tur­ing lamb on the Isle of Coll; a St An­drew’s night fundrais­ing con­cert in the Bor­ders; and a spe­cial din­ner put on by Bal­lantrae Scout Group in Ayr­shire.

For­mer Scot­land rugby cap­tain Rob Wain­wright, who is help­ing or­gan­ise the Isle of Coll event, said: “This is a great cam­paign and we got be­hind straight away.

“What bet­ter way to cel­e­brate St An­drew’s Day than bring­ing our com­mu­nity to­gether for a lamb din­ner and ceilidh?”

Those wish­ing to get in­volved in the cam­paign can down­load a poster to dis­play from the re­sources sec­tion on the UA web­site www.ua­group.co.uk. it

Bal­fron High School pupils back the cam­paign with QMS chair­woman Kate Row­ell, left, Ge­orge Purves seated with pupil Beth Rodgers and QMS chief ex­ec­u­tive Alan Clarke

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