Date for your diary: National Butchers' Week 2016 - 14th to 20th March
To help promote this year's National Butchers' Week, Meat Trades Journal is inviting butchers in Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England to nominate one male or female staff member they believe is the sexiest.
That could be because they are the best pie- or sausage-maker or because they are always coming up with the best business ideas. Or perhaps they create great recipes or have real rapport with the customers and can turn on the charm.
Whatever the reason, tweet us at @ButchersWeek, email or write to us and explain why your nominated candidate should win and, you never know, they could find their face gracing the pages of our magazine. Unfortunately for those with larger than average-sized egos, nominees will not be able to vote for themselves.
"Before and during the event, we will publish a host of news, information and ideas outlining ways to improve and market your business online and in print," said Meat Trades Journal editor Rod Addy.
"But this is a team effort and we also want you to let us know any suggestions you have to raise awareness of your own business and the sector as a whole during those seven days. You'll know what will work for you, so please seize this opportunity and get in touch.
"Never before have butchers been in a better position to capitalise on consumers' desire to shop outside big mainstream retailers and try out new things. For example, the rise in popularity of eating out over the past few years and the need to save cash has led shoppers to reduce restaurant bills by recreating the dining out experience at home. Butchers, many of whom now supply restaurants directly or offer a restaurant service themselves, are ideally placed to capitalise on that trend."
Evidence suggests that they are doing so, he added, with independent meat traders increasingly offering ready-to-eat and added-value products requiring less preparation. Others are holding cookery demonstrations to show how consumers can make the most of the meat they buy while not breaking the bank. "This week is all about showing why you're at the cutting edge of the latest market developments, why you're sexy," said Addy. "So jump on board and make the most of it."