Boost for British Game

Game-To-Eat has announced an unprecedented spend on promotional activities this season, in a bid to put more game on British plates.

The organisation - launched eight years ago to promote British game - has spent £1.4m on a campaign targeting butchers, caterers and consumers.

Butchers were the first to benefit, with newsletters sent out to 9,000 UK outlets offering free 12-page recipe booklets for customers plus recipe posters to display in shop windows.

This year, for the first time, the campaign will be supported with direct support from major retailers - with in-store tasting sessions of pheasant at selected supermarkets through October and November.

Game-to-Eat will also continue to target chefs with a series of training days. In the run-up to the start of this season, game training days have been held with Sodexo, Spirit and Elior, involving over 100 chefs. Further dates are being finalised for later this year.

Alexia Robinson, of Game-to-Eat, said: "This is shaping up to be a very exciting season for us. It is our biggest spend to date and the first time we have been able to support retailers. Most are expanding their range of wild game in the chiller, with mallard, pheasant, partridge and venison all being available this season.

"Caterers will continue to be a key focus for us to ensure game is on UK menus throughout the season. Chefs are major supporters of British and seasonal produce.

"Whether it is a Michelin-starred restaurant or a local village pub, there is always place for game on the menu. When consumers enjoy a game meal in a pub or restaurant, it encourages them to go to visit their supermarkets game fixture, make a purchase and cook a meal at home."

The Game-To-Eat website www.gametoeat.co.uk is undergoing an overhaul this season, starting with the launch of six webfilms featuring TV chef Phil Vickery in October. The films will show Phil demonstrating traditional and modern recipes for partridge, pheasant and venison.

A consumer database has been set up with a bi-monthly newsletter plus regular online competitions. Anyone selling game, either through a butcher, online, or in a restaurant or pub, can be added to the site at no cost.

"This season we really are starting in prime position to ensure that Game-to-Eat has the most successful year ever," added Robinson.