Following the outbreak of Coronavirus in the UK, we would like to share the following update with youMore info

Following the outbreak of Coronavirus in the UK, we would like to share the following updates with you 

Date 22.06.20

Update on our response to COVID-19.

 

  • Set of measures to reduce risk with absolute priority, the Health and Safety of all those who interact with Highland Game business has been organised and undertaken
  • Highland Game is under no illusions of the dangers of COVID-19, this has been heightened in light of recent news of meat plants being high risk.
  • Highland Game has invested in excess of £150,000 to date to make our business and premises COVID-19 secure, this covers:
    • Structural layout changes in the plant
    • New machinery and automation
    • New procedures and staff training to comply.
    • PPE

All these efforts have been set to get our operations and services re-started, to ensure the viability of our whole industry, suppliers and processors. 

Phased Restart Plan

As of 1st July 2020

  • Deer collections will re-start under government guidelines for COVID-19. Robust social distancing and relevant health and safety measures will be in place. Plant production efficiencies are restricted
  • Staff to return from furlough with intention to increase number of jobs throughout the season. Please note we have been employing in excess of 80 members of staff during COVID-19.
  • Priority will be given to SQWV standard and lead-free carcasses, supply of retail is 'essential' and only viable market at present

 

As of 1st September 2020

  • Full normal operation to be resumed subject to review and updates following government guidelines

Please note plant production efficiency is not at, nor likely to return to pre COVID-19 levels for quite some time, therefore we continue to ask all our partners to work closely together to put in an effective plan to spread supply over coming months in order to manage the peak.

Working together, we can create a streamlined, better planned and more efficiently delivered deer supply and processing supply chain, one which continues to boost consumer confidence and results in more natively sourced venison being sold and consumed in Scotland and throughout the UK.

COVID-19 Measures put in place at Highland Game include

  • Social distancing 
    • Critical staff moved onto shifts to ensure spacing resulting in slower throughput
    • Staggered start times and break times within shifts to ensure 2m distancing in common areas and changing facilities with maximum occupancy set
    • Structural layout changes include
      • Production lines have increased in length, areas split and some machinery moved/disconnected
      • New automated solutions have been introduced to comply with social distancing needs
      • Greater storage space added to compensate carcass imbalance given dramatic downturn in foodservice and export sales
    • Shielding with protective personal equipment including perspex screens and face visors sourced to further protect the health and welfare of our staff members.
  • In addition to social distancing
    • Additional medical questionnaires for all staff returning from holiday or illness and visitors
    • Additional hand sanitiser at all access points of building
    • Additional 2hr cleaning of amenities areas with additional viricidal disinfectant
    • Staff training (refresher on hand washing, training on COVID-19 symptoms and self isolation requirements)
    • Only critical staff on site - operations
    • Only mission critical visitors - essential services and maintenance
    • Daily staff and visitor temperature checks
    • Emergency procedures for unwell staff and decontamination of premises
  • Investing in bounce back
    • As of mid-July, we will increase our sales force capacity in England to drive greater appeal for venison in 'the new norma'l in non-retail channels
      • Food service & wholesale
      • 3rd party manufacturing
      • Online partners

In summary, Highland Game has adopted a strong strategy to secure the long-term future of Venison sales in the UK, and strive to safeguard the successful partnership we all have worked so hard to develop over the past 20 years.

We sincerely appreciate your continued support and trust in Highland Game to make the right decisions in these truly unprecedented times.

Date 21.04.20

  • New legislation came into force 26th March 2020
    • Outlined social distancing regulations to slow the spread of Coronavirus (Covid-19)
    • Included the business types subject to restrictions and closures
  • FSS Guidance for FBO's and their employees 9th April 2020
    • Social distancing should be adhered to wherever possible but it is acknowledged that there maybe specific defined tasks within a food business where this presents a particular challenge, and it maybe appropriate to take additional precautions (facemarks or others PPE)
  • Further amendments to HPS Coronavirus 21st April 2020
    • Formalised 2m distancing rules to ALL businesses that remain open
    • Businesses that do not take all reasonable measures to enforce those rules could be fined or ultimately prosecuted

 

Date 03.04.20

We have now endured almost two weeks of lockdown. A surreal experience, we are trading in a new world. Clearly the loss of wholesale, food service and export is biting as we require this business to manage our carcass balance. Nevertheless, we continue to weather the storm with significant restrictions placed to best protect our people, we deliver our service to retailers exclusively.

The past week has seen significant uplift in our retail sales as we go through a seasonal range change into summer with greater distribution into England. Our goal is to do our bit, to promote the best values of quality venison, keep our commitments and service levels to the highest standard to feed the nation from Lerwick to Land's End. A new rhythm is set, social distancing measures in factory and across supply chain seem to be working and the early stages of the pandemic where panic buying was at it's peak, now seem to be behind us.

A huge thank you to all members of our staff, supply chain, retail partners and customers who continue all to do their bit to help service and feed the nation, stay safe and stay well during these time of great uncertainty.

 

Date 27.03.20

First and foremost, we at Highland Game would like to thank all our loyal staff who have adapted and worked tirelessly to fulfil orders in most challenging conditions, as steps including social distancing impact on our production efficiencies and restrict our abilities to balance carcass sale. 

In normal circumstances the conditions are trying, yet with every passing day these pressures continue to escalate. We want to pay tribute to your extraordinary and selfless work in guaranteeing our supply chain of venison continues to feed the nation, from Lerwick to Land's End.

As per our previous entry, Highland Game will not collect carcasses until further notice. No carcass production enables us to implement the necessary social distancing rules to continue our task to serve the retail market. We strive to serve retailers to the very best of our ability and our service rates into depots continue to be exemplary.

The weeks and months ahead will continue to greatly impact our carcass balance, as the demand across our business dramatically changes. We thank all our suppliers for their understanding and support in these unprecedented times in our efforts to protect the future of the venison trade.

Over the course of the outbreak, we will continue to communicate key information, so all parties that are connected to Highland Game, be they suppliers or customers are kept very much in the loop.

In the meantime stay safe and well.

 

Date 23.03.20

Naturally all markets we serve are being severely impacted by changes to consumer behaviour, as countries move to virtual lock down. These include a very significant downturn in wholesale, food service and export. The retail market remains uncertain, as supermarkets tailor their supply chain to serve huge spikes in demand to manage panic buying.

In these uncertain times, we want to re-assure you that our priorities remain the health and safety of our colleagues and suppliers, and we will continue to follow advice from health authorities and government.

With this in mind, in agreement with public and private sector suppliers

Highland Game will not collect any carcasses from Friday 26 March 2020, for deer shot up until Tuesday 23 March 2020 for minimum of 30 days, or until further notice, which follows the latest government advice on minimising travel and movement of our staff that is of upmost importance.

We will monitor the situation on a daily basis with a view to resume collections at the earliest opportunity, carefully following government guidelines.

We thank you for your understanding and support during these unprecedented times. If you have any further questions on supply please contact Kirsty Macdonald (Technical & Procurement Manager) on 07771 880 410 for further information. 

Please note these actions do not affect our stock holding for further retail sales and growth planning for 2020.