go­ing home with game

The Field - - LETTERS -

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

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