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Red meat myths dispelled

OVER 150 nurses and healthcare professionals have had the red meat record put straight at a recent healthcare conference.
Hybu Cig Cymru – Meat Promotion Wales (HCC), Agricultural and Horticultural Development Board (AHDB) and Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) were present at the Nursing in Practice conference in Cardiff and supported a seminar, entitled ‘Combatting Malnutrition in the UK’ given by leading expert Professor Robert Pickard – Emeritus Professor of Neurobiology at Cardiff University, Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology and member of the Food Advisory Board.

Professor Pickard explained ‘The richest source of vitamins and minerals in the diet is, of course, red meat.’
Explaining the difference between different research studies and the difference between causation and association, Professor Pickard said ‘There is not a single case of cancer being caused by eating lean red meat or a red meat product.’

The levy bodies also handed out information packs and recipe ideas at the event and conducted a survey to establish opinions on red meat.
The survey showed that 72% of respondents had read or heard negative coverage about red meat in the media. However, in Professor Pickard’s seminar slot, he was able to dismiss many common media myths about red meat and clarify the ecological benefits of red meat production:
‘The criticism you often see in the newspapers is that farm animals are bad for the environment because they produce methane but people forget that the cow pays back to the land by defecating on it.’

He explained ‘There is nothing better for land than to have animals on it…replenishing its nutritional content.’
The annual Nursing in Practice conference brings nurses and healthcare professionals together to hear the latest research and listen to best-practice examples.

Rhys Llywelyn, HCC’s Market Development Manager commented ‘We were delighted to have Professor Pickard speak on our behalf at the Nursing in Practice conference. His understanding of human nutrition and biology is unrivalled and we were very pleased he was able to share his thoughts and knowledge with these health professionals.

‘With a rising level of conflicting information in the media and online, it is vitally important that factual, scientific information is communicated effectively – especially to health professionals.’

‘All consumers can be assured, therefore, that Welsh red meat is sustainably produced and makes a very valid and important contribution to nutrition and overall health.’