The search is on for the best of Scottish wild produce

Delicious Scottish venison

Celebrating wild Scottish produce is the goal with the Eat Game Awards.

This is brand new initiative created by three leading British businesses, James Purdey & Sons Ltd, Boisdale Restaurants and Taste of Game, bringing together the shooting, game meat and hospitality sectors to celebrate the wild game meat produced in the United Kingdom.

The organisers of the Eat Game Awards features a new partnership with Scotland’s Natural Larder, which is a partnership between Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and BASC Scotland, now in its sixth year, to celebrate and extend the reach of the awards to Scotland.

The awards will embark on a national search to find the champions of game and to reward their success, innovation and passion in working with this natural countryside harvest.

Delicious duck

These categories celebrate the game industry in Scotland with its great butchers, fine restaurants and pubs, small scale producers. So, if you have favourite charcuterie, a particular pie or a trusted purveyor, nominate your favourite to ensure Scotland is showcasing its finest.

The Eat Game Awards website calls for the people of Scotland to nominate their favourite game meat business, product or person before 15 June.

The awards’ newest partner, Scotland’s Natural Larder (SNL), aims to reconnect people with local and natural produce that has been sustainably harvested, fished, hunted or foraged, encouraging best practice and responsible use of natural food resources as part of a balanced diet. SNL focuses on food from nature such as game, venison, wildfowl, seafood, edible plants, seaweeds and fungi.

Dr Pete Moore, of Scotland’s Natural Larder partner SNH, said: ‘The availability of healthy, local, seasonal food and the skills required to process and prepare it safely, are a key focus for the Scotland’s Natural Larder initiative.

Prepared pheasant

‘We concentrate on wild food which is often abundant, and which is sustainably harvested. We are delighted to extend the reach of the Eat Game Awards to a Scottish Prize to reward the success of those working locally with natural produce, north of the border.’

The addition of the Scottish prize will cover the ‘Best Scottish Entry’ in each of the categories below:

Best restaurant regularly serving game; Best pub regularly serving game; Best game chef regularly cooking game; Best game farmers market stall including street food vendor; Best added value game product; Best multiple retailer selling game; Best small retailer selling game; Best game butcher; Game Hero.

The nominated charity that the awards will be supporting is the Country Food Trust, whose aim is to feed those in need with game meat casseroles packaged in ready-to-eat long-life pouches.

Tasty rabbit

After the nomination period has finished in June, the public will then be able to vote for the top 10 nominees from 12 August to 30 September.

The individual or business with the most votes will win in each category.
The results will be announced at the Eat Game Awards dinner at Boisdale Canary Wharf on 9 October.

James Horne of Purdey said: ‘The consumption of game meat is a great joy to those that have enjoyed the spoils during the game season. We are determined to broaden the awareness of the delights this meat brings and encourage its wider consumption across the UK.

‘The awards are a tremendous way of recognising the significant breadth of game use and innovation that so many ordinary people, chefs, restaurants and companies have brought to our table.’

Ranald Macdonald of Boisdale agreed: ‘The eating of game is integral to the survival of the Great British countryside, the rural economy and our way of life. It is also delicious and nutritious. For everyone’s benefit we need to encourage the consumption of British game.’

Annette Woolcock of Taste of Game added: ‘We are very excited by the Awards and hope the shooting and game meat industry will get behind them by nominating and voting for their favourite businesses and individuals. There are some great businesses now using game and we want to reward and showcase them through these awards’.

The online nomination process is quick and easy. Click HERE to name a nomination.