Open letter to the BBC: not fair game

Dear Sir

I was disappointed to watch your one sided report on National Taste of Game Week on

The report painted a very rosy picture of the game bird shooting industry where birds are reared in wild, organic conditions then shot and immediately put into the food chain for human consumption. This sadly is not the case when you look at the reality of the commercial shooting industry.

Sunday’s programme failed to mention the millions of game birds which are cage reared in appalling conditions before being released onto estates for the very purpose of being shot. These birds begin their lives in conditions worse than battery chickens which many people wouldn’t even consider buying in the supermarket. Your report also failed to mention the thousands upon thousands of birds which are shot and then discarded and left to rot. You also omitted any reference to the rigorous predator control employed on shooting estates where land is managed for a single species, such as the pheasant, which systematically wipe out any other animals which pose a threat to the birds.

It is a complete myth that every game bird which is shot is eaten, and the programme did nothing to challenge this. If this were the case then we would see more pheasants, partridges and grouse in our supermarkets every week than the number of turkeys stocked in the run up to Christmas.

We expect more balanced and impartial reporting from the BBC and look forward to this being rectified in the future.

Douglas Batchelor
Chief Executive

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