Introducing SQWV

10 December, 2013
Jonathan Whitehead

We all want food that is safe and tastes good but many of us now want more information about what we eat.

Whether dining out, or buying from a butcher or supermarket, aspects such as provenance, processing methods and environmental impact can all have a bearing on consumer buying decisions.  

SQWV Ltd (Scottish Quality Wild Venison Ltd) is an independent company which exists to maintain, develop and promote Quality Assurance Standards throughout the whole Venison industry.

There are many reasons why you might cull deer on your property. These can include the sporting aspect, maintaining the environment and habitat on your land, and helping manage a healthy population of deer.

However, there is one factor you will almost all have in common which is that you are supplying venison into the human food chain. Whether the annual cull is large or small, there is a responsibility to ensure that your venison reaches the consumer in the best possible condition.


The SQWV scheme only relates to ‘wild’ venison. This means managed populations of deer living in forests, hills and parkland under conditions of freedom i.e. living naturally.


The scheme benefits its members by:

  • Reinforcing the quality image of Wild Scottish venison
  • Meeting SQWV standards helps them meet food hygiene laws
  • Enabling them to demonstrate an understanding of food hygiene laws to authorities, venison processors and retailers
  • Reducing inspection frequency from local authorities as they recognise SQWV members have high standards and represent low risk

SQWV is also a dynamic Scheme, with standards that will alter in response to consumer, trade and legislative concerns and requirements. Standards are reviewed annually and members will be kept fully informed of any changes in the standards and conditions that may affect them.

The scheme aims to ensure:

  •     That the deer populations are being managed humanely
  •     The despatch and transport of carcase to the larder is well handled
  •     High food hygiene standards of carcase handling and larder storage
  •     Traceability of the venison from hill to plate

If you want more information on the Scottish Quality Wild Venison Schemes please contact us on 0131 335 6600 or CLICK HERE for their dedicated scheme page. 

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