Launching UK-wide with Gousto on Wednesday (27 November), Dundee-based Highland Game will supply more than 20,000 meal solutions over a two-week period, comprising its Christmas Venison and Camembert Burgers made from sustainable, wild Scottish venison.
This is the first time the firm has partnered with a recipe box or meal delivery provider, with the company agreeing a further contract to supply venison steaks the week before Christmas.
Meanwhile, over the next 12 months Highland Game will increase supply of its venison fillets, steaks, diced meat, burgers and sausage range to its UK wholesale partners to meet a surge in demand for the low-fat, lean source of protein.
Tesco and Morrisons
The announcement follows the news in September that Highland Game had secured increased distribution with retail partners Tesco and Morrisons, worth over £1 million.
Managing director and founder of Highland Game Christian Nissen said: “Alongside our partners in wholesale, foodservice, retail and export, we’ve been working hard to widen appeal for venison and raise awareness of this healthy, sustainable meat protein.”
“While the Christmas Venison and Camembert Burgers are on the indulgent side, health-conscious consumers looking for a sustainable, low-fat alternative to red meat have steadily increased demand for venison over the past five to 10 years.”
“It’s our vision to make venison available the length and breadth of the UK, and now – thanks to these increased supply deals – consumers can easily get venison online, at wholesale or in retail from Lerwick to Land’s End.
“None of our success would be possible without the integrated approach we have taken over the past 20 years working in collaboration with Forestry Land Scotland and more than 200 private estates. Together, we’ve built a robust supply chain that is supported by an ethical and sustainable deer management programme that protects the welfare of the animals and limits the environmental impact of the industry.”
Andrew Lewis, buying director at Gousto, added: “At Gousto, we pride ourselves on delivering mealtime inspiration to families across the UK. We’re delighted to be working with Highland Game to introduce two new venison products to our customers, so they can enjoy even more great-tasting dinners.”
Ten years ago, roughly 95% of Highland Game’s domestically produced venison was exported overseas, with the rest sold through select butchers and delicatessens. Today, 75% of Highland Game’s produce is sold domestically to key retailers and wholesalers.
Nissen said: “The current business climate is a difficult one, including the ongoing lack of clarity over future UK trading arrangements.
“External uncertainty of any type is always hard for business. However, over the past few years we’ve worked with our public and private sector partners to develop the UK market for venison and increase awareness and demand for this sustainable product. Together, we can and will continue to grow this market even further and ensure venison remains a Scottish success story.”