I thought long and hard about this blog series before writing it. People feel very strongly about their food, what they cook and eat, and I didn't want to offend or upset anyone who reads the blog.
But I travel a lot. And the food in grocery stores in some places is so processed and packed with hormones that you really can't tell it was ever alive. This upsets me and I don't think it's right. This is why I'll come out and say this now: I, sometimes, hunt game to eat and enjoy.
Why I believe hunting game is far better than the alternative
A lot of people have issues with hunting and I can understand why. Before you go thinking something horrible about me, let me explain. Hunting wild game gives the animal it’s entire life to roam freely. We only hunt and kill what we know is over-populated and that we are going to eat and enjoy. And enjoy we do. We spend hours cooking, drinking, and respecting the animal as our ancestors have done for years and years. It’s one of the most natural things.
Slaughterhouses and commercial farming, in comparison, are absolutely despicable. Watch any video from PETA and you will understand. Animals stuffed into cages, fed hormones, and kept pregnant for as long as they are alive. Animals on commercial farms are treated in the worst ways imaginable.
When I hunt game, it really is about respect for the animal. The animal is shot quickly and it dies an almost painless death. This is not the case for slaughterhouses.
What’s the answer?
I’m not suggesting you go vegan, although if you are, that's entirely your choice and I support it. But if you have me on any social media channels - you’ll know that I love my meat (even more than Champagne, and that’s saying a lot). The best way, in my opinion, to solve this issue is to know where your food comes from. If you pay attention and are curious about what you eat, I guarantee you will usually eat healthier and more sustainably.
The 100-Mile Diet
I don’t know if you’ve heard of the 100-mile diet, but it’s something I am conscious of every day. It literally means eating food that is produced within the 100-mile radius of where you are and when you try it, you'll understand why eating locally is so important.
It’s about being mindful; perhaps you don’t need to eat strawberries that have travelled from across the world in the winter. It's making the decision to eat something you know is easier and closer for you to access. If you know who your butcher is and what farm they get their food from, chances are, that animal had a better life. You're also making a healthier decision for your body to eat less processed and hormone-filled food.
A final thought
If you’re surprised I hunt on occasion, I sincerely hope I haven’t offended you. I wouldn’t hunt something for trophies because it truly isn’t about that. It’s about hunting something that there is an abundance of, keeping the tradition of cooking the food yourself, and knowing where your food comes from.
Think of your last meal. Do you know where it came from? Comment and let me know your thoughts. Next up: my review of The Game Cookbook by Clarissa Dickson Wright and Sir John Scott.
Giles Cadman is Chairman of The Cadman Capital Group, a group of cohesive, complementary companies, operating in the international trade, retail, leisure, and investment markets. Learn more about Giles.