The number one benefit of eating game is its healthiness. Research carried out by Leatherhead Food International1 shows how game compares very favourably with other red and white meats.
Venison is high in protein, low in saturated fatty acids and contains higher levels of iron than any other red meat. Pheasant and partridge also contain a high level of iron, protein, vitamin B(6) and selenium, which helps to protect cells from damage, reducing the chance of cancer (see link below to the research).
Game is wild, natural and free-range and, in these days of concern about the food we eat, it is traceable. A good butcher should be able to tell their customers the provenance of the game they sell and it’s likely to be local.
Game is available in a variety of cuts during the season – from oven-ready whole grouse, partridges and pheasant, to venison fillets, diced rabbit and even sausages. It is easy to cook, very versatile, and the Game to Eat website has a great recipe page that can give you lots of ideas.
Game meat is also incredibly versatile and makes a tasty change from other meats. Venison is a great substitute in most recipes for beef. Next time you make a casserole or pie try using diced venison. Similarly pheasant is a great alternative to chicken in most dishes, as is rabbit.
There is a vocal minority that continue to try to put people off game by claiming it is harmful due to being shot with lead ammunition – but their agenda actually has more to do with a dislike for shooting than health issues. Like all things if eaten in moderation there is no evidence to show that the levels of lead in game are harmful, indeed the European Food Safety Authority has shown that much higher levels of lead can be attributed to everyday foods such as potatoes, cereal products and leafy vegetables2.
Director of shooting for the Countryside Alliance, Adrian Blackmore said: “We would like to thank all the supermarkets that are bringing out new game items this season, really helping us in our cause to promote this British food to the British public, and in doing so also helping so many people in our rural communities. Introducing game ready-meals to shops brings a new market to the food and we are excited to see the benefits.”
For more information, contact Countryside Alliance head of media Charlotte Cooper on 0207 8409220 and 07500 834163 or email [email protected]
Information for journalists
• 1Game’s health credentials can be found here – http://www.gametoeat.co.uk/article/nutritional-facts
• 2A graph showing levels of lead in different foods can be found in fig 10 on p54 of this document http://www.efsa.europa.eu/en/efsajournal/doc/1570.pdf
• Recipes can be found at www.gametoeat.co.uk