The implications of a decline in the hind kill and a slowly growing velvet herd were discussed at a meeting between the DINZ board and South Canterbury/North Otago deer farmers in Mayfield 10 days ago. Velvet levies now make up a third of the board’s income, up from 25% a few years ago.
Cervena was the hero of the winning entry in the City & Guilds New Zealand Team Skills competition, one of the country’s top culinary competitions for younger chefs. The winners’ main was roasted Cervena Venison wrapped in tamarillo with smoked potato, savoy cabbage, baby carrots, rocket puree and jus.
The venison schedule is looking much better this season, with exporters tipping that the spring peak will be north of $8/kg. While the deer kill is expected to be down 15% on last year, indications are that more hinds are being retained to hopefully rebuild the national breeding herd.
Deer farmers in North Canterbury are having to make some tough decisions after battling drought for 12 months. Because some may decide to fawn their hinds off the farm, DINZ wants to hear from farmers in summer-safe districts who have grazing available.