New Project, PigProGrAm, aims to reduce the environmental impact of ammonia emissions from livestock

A new project to reduce the environmental impact of ammonia emissions from livestock has been awarded £600K funding from Defra/UKRI. PigProGrAm will bring together farming and engineering expertise to demonstrate a novel farm-focused solution for the harvesting of green ammonia from pig waste.


The research project will be delivered via a consortium of partners including the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB), Beta Technology, Duynie, Projex Solutions, the University of Leeds and a commercial pig unit in North Yorkshire. Together they offer expertise in livestock farming, sustainable animal feed, chemical engineering, and smart agricultural systems. The progress and results from the project, which launched in October, will be communicated via digital and physical events over the next 18 months.


Jen Waters, Head of Knowledge Exchange for Pork at AHDB said: “We hope that the PigProGrAm project is the first stage of a larger demonstration of the potential of this innovative approach to harvesting green ammonia from livestock and will help the UK meet its net-zero emission target.  It could also have a significant impact on the public perception of pig farming as it represents an opportunity to reposition pork production from being part of society’s environmental problems to being part of its solution.


“Investigating the potential to harvest green fuel from livestock slurry is one of several projects AHDB is working on to help mitigate ammonia emissions from pig farming. It is a major opportunity for all classes of livestock production, not just pigs but dairy, beef and poultry as well.”


Agriculture is a major source of ammonia emissions which can impact negatively on biodiversity through nitrogen accumulation on land and acidification of watercourses. This innovation will help to create a more sustainable livestock industry in the UK, reducing the environmental impacts of production by lowering ammonia emissions, whilst at the same time creating an additional resource that can be used to generate hydrogen, a valuable tool in the fight against climate change. The generation of green ammonia and conversion to hydrogen from agricultural waste streams delivers valuable products used to decarbonise power and transportation.


The PigProGrAm, (Developing a Circular Economy for UK Pig Production Through Green Ammonia Harvesting), project has received £600K of funding under the government’s Farming Innovation Pathway collaboration between Defra and UKRI. This funding is delivered through the ISCF Transforming Food Production programme, in partnership with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Farming Innovation Programme.


Additional information about the new program can be found at UK Research and Innovation  as well as the UK government website.


To find out more about AHDB visit

US targeted in series of AHDB online red meat events

High quality beef and pork from the UK are taking centre stage in a series of virtual events targeting the US foodservice market.


Organised and hosted by AHDB, the on-line events will showcase red meat from the UK as well as promote the country’s high production standards. They will also allow exporters to continue making important connections within these markets during a time when a physical presence at trade shows is challenging.


A selection of importers, distributors, chefs, butchers, high-end grocers and members of the media in Florida will be targeted in September, followed by a Texas-focused event in November.


They follow on from the first two hugely successful on-line events, held earlier in the year, which targeted California and Illinois.


They included cooking demonstrations by sous chef Luke Rhodes who made it through the final eight of last year’s MasterChef: The Professionals, as well as award-winning Stoke Park Club’s Executive Chef, Chris Wheeler.


The pair showcased their culinary skills to create dishes including Mini Picanha Roast, Rump Bistro, Pork Henry and Daubes Collar of Pork.


The online showcases also included a butchery demonstration by Master Butcher, Martin Eccles, as well as presentations from Red Tractor’s Philippa Wiltshire and Dr. Mandy Nevel, AHDB’s Animal Health and Welfare, talking about the UK’s traceability, food safety and animal welfare.


Panel discussions featured representatives from AHDB as well as five red meat exporters from the UK who provided insight into their products and connected exporters with potential importers.


To find out more about AHDB visit

Pan Searing Beef

Our culinary team is often asked for tips on the best way to prepare a pan seared steak. Denise Spencer-Walker shares her thoughts on the best way to pan sear our grass fed beef.


1. Your steak should be at room temperature before you cook it. No matter which cut of beef you are pan searing, tenderloin, hanger steak, rib-eye, rump steak and sirloin are some of my favorites to pan sear, the steak should be at room temperature before cooking and I recommended you pat the surface of the steak to dry it before cooking as this will help to form a good crust during cooking.


2. Make sure that you heat the pan before using. Whether using a heavy-duty thick frying pan, a heavy griddle pan or a cast iron skillet, your pan should very hot before cooking the steaks, and the pan should be roomy enough to avoid overcrowding the steak.


3. Coat both sides of the steak with some sort of oil or fat. I suggest that you coat both sides of the steaks with a mild oil, such as canola, and once the steak is searing you can add butter to the pan along with garlic cloves or fresh herbs for extra flavor.


4. Season your beef before adding it to the pan. You should season the steak with a little salt up to two hours before cooking and then add pepper just before cooking. Contrary to popular belief, seasoning a steak with salt ahead of time doesn’t draw out the moisture; it actually gives the steak time to absorb the salt and the meat becomes more evenly seasoned throughout.


5. Cook your steak for the same amount of time on each side. To build up an even crust on both sides, you will want to cook the meat for the same amount of time on each side and I recommend only flipping the steak once.


6. Let the meat rest once finished cooking. Your cooked steak should rest at room temperature on a warm plate ideally for around half of the steak’s total cooking time with a minimum of five minutes resting time. Any resting juices should be poured over the steak or into the accompanying sauce before serving.


Please be sure to share photos of your pan seared beef and tag us at @meattheukexporters