going home with game
I was struck by one of the statistics in your Comment (Understanding
the game meat market, July issue): if every gun accepted a brace on a shoot day, one million extra birds would be taken away and, hopefully, consumed.
Many of the people I know who do not shoot are inclined to agree that our sport is defensible, if not supportable, on the basis that wild game poses fewer welfare issues than the intensively reared meat consumed by millions every day. However, the reality that too much game meat is wasted nullifies what should be a strong argument in favour of shooting.
Perhaps a campaign should be spearheaded by our shooting groups and media outlets to make sure that every gun does take home a brace, something akin to the Game to Eat campaign. Through this we could make it clear to guns that failing to take a brace is viewed as poor form, on a par with failing to tip the keeper or talking on one’s mobile phone during a drive. This would surely increase the amount of game consumed and strengthen the impression that the shooting community does everything possible to keep our sport ethical and sustainable.
I have always thought it insulting to those who provide our shooting not to take home the game they present. I cannot see any disadvantages in more guns growing to share this view. Mathew Patey, Wardington, Oxfordshire I was concerned to read of the difficulties in game being usefully appropriated from shoots, which is indeed a gift to those who would like to see shooting cease.
We were invited to attend the local shoot dinner while in southwest France this spring. It was an informal affair in the village hall where, for 18 euros, we were given gallons of wine/pernod/whisky and fed several delicious courses of wild boar processed as salami, sausages, pâté, a stew and huge chops cooked on a spit (pictured, left). There was enough sanglier to feed an army.
There must have been 150 people to feed – and not all were part of La Chasse. Everyone had a whale of a time, whether you spoke the language or not.
Maybe this would be a good way of using up some of the birds? It was certainly fun.
Val Tromans, by email