The BGA’s Game Farm Assurance Scheme has its first members, as innovative, forward-looking game farms embrace the first assurance scheme of its kind for this sector.
Following a successful pilot scheme in Summer 2019, the BGA officially launched its Game Farm Assurance Scheme back in January 2020, granting members exclusive access to the first validated Mycoplasma Test for game birds.
Farming practices are under huge political and social scrutiny and game farms are certainly not immune. The best response to such scrutiny is adherence to clear and credible standards of best practice, subject to independent audit. Such schemes are almost universal in other farming sectors and this is what the BGA Game Farm Assurance Scheme offers to our industry. The Scheme also allows BGA Member Shoots to source birds from Assured Game Farms, which in turn further develops the BGA’s ability to market and sell a fully assured and traceable game product to the food industry.
The Game Farm Assurance Scheme has been developed with input from the Game Farmers’ Association (GFA), the British Veterinary Poultry Association (BVPA) and our partner shooting organisations. The Game Farm Standards are based upon DEFRA’s Welfare Code and cover all aspects of game farming and include specific standards for breeding, hatching and rearing.
Additionally, through the BGA’s new ‘Health Plan Service’, the first ever-validated blood test to identify Mycoplasma in game birds is now available, exclusively available to BGA Member Game Farms and Shoots. This new test helps identify a clean flock, boosting welfare, making the birds more marketable, and helping prevent potential financial losses further down the line.
Paul Jeavons, from Worcestershire Game Farm who completed the audit said,
“Passing the BGA audit has added to the professional integrity of my game farm business. It is also key to driving standards in the game-farming sector offering accountability and transparency to our customers and wider stakeholders. It will help retain and recruit new customers who are less interested in penny pinching but want to source sustainably reared quality game birds from an independently audited source. Resulting in more reliable payment terms and better cash flow.”
Become BGA Assured and demonstrate best practice whilst offering your clients a high quality and traceable bird. For more information on how to sign up, visit www.britishgamealliance.co.uk/bga-register/