our guide to selling venison locally
COVID-19 restrictions on hospitality and catering, as well as the cheaper import of foreign venison, has made it difficult for UK deer stalkers to sell meat on. One solution is to look at selling venison locally.
Here is a quick guide on how to sell venison locally in England and Wales…
There are some good opportunities to sell venison locally, the public has an appetite for wild and British meat. It appears that COVID-19 has made many people become much more conscious about their health and wellbeing. And this trend seems to have remained even after the restrictions were lifted.
We have seen an increase in venison sales locally. Consumers not only want to support local businesses but are also much more concerned about what they are eating. This was highlighted by Mintel in their COVID-19 research June 2020.
Below, we have put together some useful information to help you if you are thinking of selling venison locally.
In Scotland, it is a legal requirement for one party in any transaction (sale, barter or exchange) to be a venison dealer, unless the venison was bought from a venison dealer. You can, however, give venison away.
Q. What is the best way to get my deer butchered if I do not have the skills?
A. Most approved game handling establishments do a buy-back service where you can drop off the carcasses and they will butcher the meat for you, just ask your local game dealer.
Q. What sort of products sell well?
A. Added value is the best way to make money on your venison and to sell those cuts which are hard to sell.
Steaks always sell well but you could think about adding a special sauce to the pack to make your product unique. It does not have to be homemade – a local sauce supplier may be happy to help you.
Sausages and burgers are always popular too. There is a great YouTube butcher Scott Rae who has videos on how to make them. Mincers and burger presses can be bought online and are relatively inexpensive. Venison mince is also good for replacing beef mince in recipes. But be very careful with your food hygiene as minced meat can be contaminated easily.
Casserole meat will sell very well in the winter. It’s also a good idea to have simple recipes to give to any customers unsure how to cook venison.
Q. How do I package my meat?
Q. How do I sell my venison locally?
A. The easiest way is through the word of mouth. Ask friends and family to spread the word – people like recommendations. A good way to sell venison locally is to go to local farmers’ markets. They are a great place to sell your products and get the word out. You will need to think of a name for your company, too.
You can also sell online but take into account packaging costs and postage. The safest way is to send out the meat frozen on a next-day delivery service with appropriate packaging to keep the products cold. Everything you will need can be purchased online. You can also think about doing your own deliveries, but the meat must be kept at below seven degrees during the entire journey.
Your local butcher or farm shop may also be keen to find a venison supplier, so don’t be afraid to ask around. Try your local restaurants or pubs, too.
Q. Can I sell or give away venison on Facebook?
A. Yes, you can but you must be registered as a Food Business with your local council. Meat should be kept at below seven degrees in transit.
Taste of Game (now known as Eat Game) did some consumer research earlier in 2020 to find out what consumers are drawn to:
What the consumer wants
What the consumer doesn’t want
Key messages for game promotion are: