BRITISH beef farmers are demanding to know why the farm-gate beef price remains low, after 12 weeks of falling prices.

The latest figures from AHDB show the farm-gate price is now 22 pence per kg below the five year average.

Richard Findlay, North Yorkshire farmer and NFU livestock board chairman, said: "Farmers are now getting £200 to £300 per animal less than they were a few months ago. We have been dealing with incredibly low prices for months now and the situation is not sustainable. This downward trend is massively concerning for beef farmers, especially considering that beef exports are up and we are actually importing less beef from other countries."

He said farmers do need to promote their product better, but it is clear that there is a market for British beef - making it difficult to understand where the low price had come from and why it is not improving.

Mr Findlay said farmers need clarity on what market factors were diving down the farm-gate price.

He said: "Without understanding what's causing a market movement we can't respond to it and for us to understand it we need greater transparency throughout the whole supply chain. This includes clearer pricing structures. terms and conditions with notice of any changes and a wholesale review of processor deductions.

"If we don’t get to the bottom of what’s driving the low price we will start to see farmers leaving the sector. That would not only be devastating for farmers but for people here and abroad who value the amazing taste, sustainable production and high traceability of British beef."