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BGA News and Q&A

BGA News and Q&A

As we enter the driven season, here's a news update from the British Game Alliance as well as a candid Q&A from its Managing Director, Tom Adams [pictured]:


  • We are just about to exceed 600 shoots
  • 250,000 head of game is being exported to Hong Kong in this coming year
  • The Drake and Morgan group are using BGA assured NPD sausages and sausage rolls in 22 of their sites
  • 50% of member shoots will be audited by the end of 2019
  • We are helping BGA assured processors achieve their SALSA accreditation with a mentoring scheme

And following queries from some SACS members, Tom Adams has answered the most common questions:

Q: Why does the managing director drive a nice car, he obviously pays himself too much:

A: The BGA has no company cars, all cars are personal and were acquired before the BGA was set up with personal funds. All salaries are set by the independent board who don’t get paid so only have a vested interest in the BGA’s success and future, and money is spent wisely.

Q: Why is the BGA based in London, and why are the directors not ‘shooting people’, dressing accordingly:

A: The BGA is not a shooting body but a food marketing board and quality assurance scheme, spending most of its time engaging with food businesses based in London, promoting game with an appropriate image for the world we are trying to get game seen in as an every day source of protein.

Q: What background in the shooting world does the managing director have:

A: Having been brought up with shooting, the MD spent two years keepering a shoot in Somerset, did a season on a game farm, worked on a hunting farm in Namibia, did Agri-Land Management at university, then worked at GunsOnPegs for four years as Director of Shooting.

Q: Why does BASC have a charge on BGA assets; is that a threat to the independence of the auditing scheme?

A: BASC lent significant, critical funds to the BGA due the BGA’s foundation where no bank would do so. Like any responsible membership organisation BASC took necessary measures to ensure that should the BGA fold, their members' money would be recouped some how. This is only a precautionary action and one that no one hopes will ever be needed.

Q: Are all these trips abroad just ‘jollies’ for the BGA staff team? It’s all jobs for the boys, not for real shooting people?

A; Having delivered a signed agreement for one quarter of a million head of game this season from their trip to Hong Kong, where 20 meetings were set up by the Department of International Trade, the proof is in the pudding. With quotes for Assured British from their Japan trip, it is hoped the same will be replicated there too.

Q: Aren’t the BGA just taking the credit for foreign deals resulting from negotiations that were already underway through the game processors?

A: No - for example the HK importer has never stocked game before and has never spoken to any game dealers prior to the BGA. The BGA is focusing on new markets but also growing existing ones through its range of innovative, commercial game products.

Q: Is it environmentally sustainable to be exporting British game, and what does the need to export say to antis about domestic consumption?

A: What would you rather, a mound of buried game or markets both here in the UK and abroad opened up. Our agricultural sectors also export more than we utilise here: there is a reason for that.

Q: Why aren’t more game dealers working with the BGA, is it because there’s a threat they’ll be put out of business because of the BGA’s activities?

A: The BGA is currently working with 18 processors and hopes to work with them all; but not all are prepared for change and might feel threatened by the BGA's activities.

Q: Why are shoots/keepers being told they will lose their credibility if they aren’t BGA members, and don’t BGA staff realise that kind of language puts people off joining because they feel like they’re being railroaded?

A: That language isn’t acceptable and is not company policy. The team and the BGA’s 600+ Members and thousands of supporters feel passionately that for a sustainable future for shooting the BGA and self-regulation has a big part to play, and should we all not recognise that. It’s not about credibility, it’s about continuing to do what we do in the years to come.

Q: Why is the BGA using some ambassadors who are new to shooting and don’t seem very well informed on basic issues?

The BGA has 20 ambassadors who offer their time and skill sets on different areas to help the BGA, not all are shooting sector people. But from the likes of David Johnstone and Ian Coghill to Brian Mitchel, the BGA has some very credible ambassadors.

Thank you to Tom for answering these questions so candidly and for being open to feedback. If members reading this have additional queries, please send them to us at and we'll pass them on to Tom for his answers!

Posted by: / 26 September 2019 at 14:37 / Comment

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