Ahead of Healthy Eating Week, 12-18th June 2023, British Game Assurance (BGA) are encouraging the UK public to eat wild and sustainable British meat as an alternative to mass-produced meats, stating that it is the “healthiest you can eat.”
The eating of wild game is not only much more sustainable but also healthier than many other meats we see today. Game (e.g. pheasant, partridge, rabbit, venison etc.) has a lower carbon footprint than most mass-produced meats (e.g. pork, chicken, beef etc.) and is leaner, higher in protein, and lower in fat.
For example, pheasant has more protein compared with chicken (27g/100g in pheasant 20.1g/100g in chicken) so is perfect for a post workout meal. It’s high in selenium, something which is also found in Brazil nuts, eggs, and cereals and is needed in the diet to produce the antioxidant enzyme called selenium-dependent glutathione peroxidase, which protects cells against harmful free radicals. Venison has 4.5mg/100g of iron compared to just 2.6mg/100g in beef and is lower in fat (3.2g/100g compared to 15g/100g in beef).
What’s more is, the industry is essential to the management and maintenance of countryside environments. These animals live in the wild and in abundance in the UK. Culling them is a requirement to help their populations grow and remain healthy, whilst also providing employment and high-quality, assured meat which follows strict regulations covering land management, numbers of birds reared and released, and the use of medication before entering the market.
EatWild is the BGA’s public-facing campaign for game and champions healthy living, environmental impact, food miles and tasty versatility. It offers people an easy education into the world of wild game, and the chance to try cooking with it for the first time.
The EatWild shop stocks the basics to get people started in their game cookery journey, including products such as game mix, venison steaks, sausages and burgers. They’ve even developed spice mixes specifically for game meat as often those who have never cooked with game can fret about how best to work with it. These spice mixes take away all the guess work.
If you’re celebrating Healthy Eating Week and thinking about cooking with chicken, say, try pheasant instead. Compared with chicken, it’s far higher in protein and selenium and lower in calories. This simple, versatile pheasant and mushroom risotto recipe is a great one to start with.