M&S moves to source gamebirds that are lead-free

Marks and Spencer have announced that as of next season they will only be sourcing gamebirds that are lead-free and BGA-assured.

The retailer sent along a senior representative to a recent meeting of shooting agents to explain that British Game Assurance-assured and lead free was the future of the game meat market, and M&S wanted to get there first.

This is important news, not just for those shoots who want to supply their game birds to the major retailers.

Liam Stokes, chief executive of British Game Assurance, said: ‘M&S are signposting the way to encourage many more people eating game, and we have no doubt that other outlets will rush to catch up.

‘The BGA mission is to grow the number of places game is sold, the amount of game going into those outlets and the number of people choosing to buy it. That mission is underpinned by our assurance scheme and promoted by our EatWild campaign, and we know that the more shoots sign up for assurance and opt to go lead free, the more successful this mission will be.

‘We also know other BGA processors are just as keen to secure their supply of BGA-assured, lead-free birds, because this is what the market wants. That is why we have taken on two new regional development officers to help new shoots get started with assurance and navigate their audit.

‘Sarah Broomhead and Sam Phillips are now the first point of contact for anyone wanting to talk about how their shoot or game farm can participate in getting more people eating more game. They bring a diversity of practical, real-world experience to the BGA and will be our boots on the ground in the community. They would love to hear from you.

‘The future of game shooting hinges on the massive twelve months that lie ahead of us, as game dealers call for lead free and assured game and sporting agents prepare to work exclusively with BGA shoots from next year. It is important we approach these changes in the spirit of dialogue and conversation.’

The BGA is urging business that want to register for assurance and make the transition to away from lead ammunition to contact them to find out how they can supply M&S. Visit www.britishgameassurance.co.uk

Click HERE for more food and drink news from Scottish Field, in association with Cask & Still