BUTCHERS trading at Castle Market in Sheffield are experiencing a sales bonanza as shoppers lose confidence in supermarket meat.
Reports that some supermarket ready meals and burgers have been found to contain horse meat have led to products being removed from shelves.
And that has meant a boom in business for butchers at the market.
John Galley, proprietor of Slattery’s butcher’s stall, said he had been rushed off his feet since news of the horse meat scandal broke.
“I can’t remember us being this busy,” he said.
“It’s been like Christmas every day for a fortnight, and I know it’s the same for the other butchers down here too.
“Customers, many of whom I have never seen before, are buying everything from fresh chicken to joints of beef.
“But it’s the burgers, which we make freshly every day, that are selling more than ever. It’s a burger bonanza down here.”
Fellow market butcher Paul Thorpe said Saturday had been a particularly busy day.
“People know if they want safe, fresh meat then this is the place to come,” he said.
“If you want a pair of shoes you go to a shoe shop, if you want fresh meat you can trust the butchers at Castle Market.
“It’s like the sign says, our burgers are 100 per cent beef. No horse in our burgers, guaranteed!
“How many of the supermarkets can now say that?”
Shoppers were in agreement the market was the place to be.
Retired electrician Frank Wood, aged 77, from Woodhouse Mill, was collecting his fresh meat from the stall.
He said: “I won’t be buying frozen stuff from supermarkets any more. Down here you know exactly what you are getting.”
Retired care assistant Pat Webb, 63, had travelled all the way from Stocksbridge to the city centre to do her shopping at the market.
She said: “I won’t trust the supermarkets again. It makes you wonder how long this sort of thing has been going on.”
Carol Minnot, 75, a retired machinist from Page Hall, agreed.
“The meat is fresher and it’s better at the market,” she said. “And you know you’re getting exactly what it says it is.”
Ian Foster, 61, a retired teacher from Hunters Bar, said: “The market offers freshness and value. Nothing is wasted. They do really nice meat here.”
And Doreen Hill, 71, a retired sales assistant from Wybourn, said: “It’s really not on of the supermarkets to tell people they are getting beef, then later you learn it’s really horse.
“I don’t suppose horse meat would do you any harm, but the supermarkets should tell us exactly what we are getting.”