A key achievement of the Forum has been to reduce the live export of calves by 90%: now just 2% of dairy calves born in Britain are exported live abroad. Professor John Webster, Emeritus Professor of Animal Husbandry at the University of Bristol speaking at the Calf Forum event emphasised that despite the title of the Forum, it's not about exports but alternatives.
Veal (a hearty T-bone) is on the new lunchtime grill menu at Coq D'Argent in London. And the light-pinky slab of flesh's slightly shady past fits in well with this well-known hub of City life. It's elegant and tasty and smells good, has a hint of decadence, but you also feel a bit naughty eating it.
Have you ever eaten veal? If not, you're not alone. Many people don't understand what veal is or think it's cruel because it comes from calves killed at a young age. Surely it's better to ensure they are treated well, and produce higher welfare meat from them, than let them go to waste as a simple by-product?
This is a classic recipe for veal but with a light courgette and fennel salad that cuts the richness of the breaded veal. I have used veal loin because it is tender and you can serve it pinker than you would with an escalope of veal.
This veal dish is a Italian classic called saltimbocca which means jump in the mouth. By using veal loin it is much more tender than the traditional cushion of veal. The combination of veal and prosciutto is delicious especially when it is crispy. Try it!
Milk and veal go hand in hand -- one does not exist without the other. If the thought of animal suffering bothers you, remember: you don't have to support an industry that tears calves away from their mothers for milk or for veal.
Despite our recent 'food renaissance', some of the most obvious sources of local and seasonal food don't feature in our shops, on our shopping lists or even on our culinary radars. Veal is one of these.