Communicating the BGA’s Aims
The BGA’s main aims are to increase the demand for game meat, in order to return a commercial value back to the product as well as encourage shoots of all sizes to join its initiative, to implement a credible self-regulation across the shooting industry. By ensuring the industry abides by “best practice”, the BGA’s aims offer political security for a sustainable future for shooting. In light of this, 87% of survey respondents agreed that these aims and objectives were clearly stated and well communicated. The BGA continues to communicate these aims through channels such as events, social media, newsletters, and press placements and with the help of the BGA ambassadors.
Breaking down these main aims, 73% of people felt that both the marketing of game and assurance scheme are as important as each other, while 23% felt that focusing on just marketing would be more beneficial to the industry.
The BGA Membership
Members felt that in order to encourage more shoots to become members of the BGA, the benefits of becoming a member needs to be emphasised more clearly (40%) as well as reviewing the membership costs (16%). The BGA strives to make its membership as accessible as possible and so offers a tiered membership depending on shoot size.
The BGA shoot standards were put in place to ensure high welfare standards are being adhered to and ensuring full traceability; shoot members are assessed by the BGA’s independent auditors against these standards. Over 77% of responses agreed that these standards are fit for purpose in demonstrating to the wider industry that shoots are abiding by best practice.
Tackling Key Industry Issues
The BGA continued to make great progress in the 19/20 shooting season, securing markets for game meat across the UK and overseas with big hitters such as Samworth Brothers – the largest contract caterers in the UK – agreeing to only stock BGA assured game products across its outlets. The BGA also launched the first Game Farm Audit as well as offering its members the first-ever validated test for Mycoplasma in game birds – a disease that veterinary specialists believe is one of the biggest problems the shooting industry will face. Survey responses agreed, with 68% stating that the BGA had made a positive impact on the industry to date.
Constructive feedback included that the BGA had created a stronger demand, but a larger focus is needed on supply, to ensure members provide quality birds. The BGA is focusing on both aspects with the Shoot and Game Farm Audits as well as opening new markets at home and overseas.
In light of this, 68% of members voiced that they would also like to see a greater marketing of game meat as well as more availability of game in restaurants and retailers, as a result of the BGA. The BGA has had great success in securing new markets with an extensive list of BGA assured suppliers, retailers, and restaurants since its inception and will continue to focus on this. Furthermore, 18% would like to see a secure future for shooting as a result of the BGA’s work.
Looking Ahead to the 20/21 Season
Looking to the future, the biggest issues that were voiced in the survey were the concerns around bag numbers, the recent industry announcement around moving away from lead, as well as the ‘Anti Movement.’ Survey respondents also believed that the BGA could improve messaging around game in a number of areas, such as in education (6%), limiting bag numbers (13%), raising awareness of the benefits of eating game (13%) and promotion of the BGA and its aims (47%).
The BGA works closely alongside the Countryside Alliance to provide its members with advice on dealing with the ‘Anti Movement’ and will continue to do so. Liam Stokes the new Managing Director will announce his aims for the British Game Alliance when he starts in May 2020.
*Based on a survey with 45 respondents
The BGA would like to thank everyone who took the time to fill in the End of Season Survey.
If you wish to send further feedback or comment on any of these points, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.