Detailed market research from Scottish Venison Association which looked at the whole of the UK has shown that the retail home venison market is growing in value, recording an increase of 10.9% through 2019.
For the first time, market research, which was undertaken by Kantar and new attitudinal research by 56 Degree Insight for the Scottish Venison Association and SAOS and funded by the Scottish Government, has given an accurate snapshot of how the UK retail venison market is performing and of consumer views in Scotland and across the rest of the UK towards buying and eating venison.
According to the research, the UK retail venison market was worth £14.4m in 2019, with a total of 1,221 tonnes sold in the last 12 months and accounts for around a third of all venison production in the UK.
It establishes that sales of primary cuts were worth £7.1m (up by 43%) and burgers and grills worth £5.2m. The retail market is dominated by two brands accounting for 59% of sales with Highland Game at #1 and Waitrose own label at #2. In terms of retailer share of venison Waitrose is in front with 33.2% of the market, Sainsbury’s following with 13% and then Morrisons with 10.7%.
The findings also show that 49% of venison is bought from the supermarket; 26% from butchers; 14% from farm shops; and 9% from mail order. Venison shoppers are likely to be older and more affluent, with 13% of those eating venison living in Scotland, and that 30% of all venison is consumed by those aged 65 and over.
Bill Bewsher, Chairman of the Scottish Venison Association, said that the new detailed new research will allow the association to be better informed as well as having confirmation that there is healthy growth for venison across the retail sector.
Mr Bewsher said: “With these data, processors and other intermediaries can now go to the market with confidence and talk to buyers armed with evidence and hard fact. Venison is performing better than other red meats in general and that is good news for the wild sector, for deer farmers, and for those who have diversified into deer farming. We are keen to maintain this momentum if we can once the current constraints of the covid-19 crisis and uncertainties surrounding Brexit have past.”