Game over: Marks & Spencer abandons grouse sales, again

Mon 20 July CopyMarks & Spencer has announced it will not stock red grouse this year.

Using the same excuse as it did last year (see here), M&S claims there are not enough red grouse available from its (unidentified) source estate. What M&S don’t say is that there is probably considerable nervousness amongst the Board that had they stocked red grouse this year, the first customer through the door would be Mark Avery, who had promised (here) to test the M&S grouse for lead levels. It could have been embarrassing for M&S, just as it was for Iceland stores last year (see here).

Read the full M&S statement here.

The statement includes a bit more information about the ‘exclusive’ estate in question, saying that ‘many different raptor species, including hen harriers, thrive there’.

Hmm. Given that they’ve previously said this estate is in Scotland, the only driven grouse moor that we’re aware of where hen harriers could be said to be ‘thriving’ is Langholm. Are other raptors ‘thriving’ there? Many are doing pretty well, although if Mark Oddy has his way (see here), buzzards may not be very welcome for long.

The statement also waxes lyrical about M&S’s unique ‘Code of Practice for sourcing red grouse’ and how M&S hopes this Code will ‘help the whole industry learn and improve’. It would help if M&S published this Code but so far, they’ve refused.

Anyway, for now, the news that M&S will not be selling red grouse this year is a good result.

This is turning in to the best Inglorious 12th ever, especially as the e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting has just soared past 92,000 signatures.

13 thoughts on “Game over: Marks & Spencer abandons grouse sales, again”

  1. Several friends of mine who have no real interest have signed the petition after hearing the Packham v Botham discussion today

    1. I would have to agree with your take on debate. I don’t think it is any coincidence that the success of Chris Packham’s knowledgeable and factual stance, against the sheer buffoonery of Ian Botham, and the resultant commentary on social media and other media, has managed to see the petition pass the 95,000 mark.

  2. Ever an agnostic …. but one who needs evidence these days to believe any marketing spin, sorry!

    They say that their suppliers estates have breeding HHs, have you guys seen any evidence?

    I’ve requested the CoP along with what they regard as acceptable levels of toxic lead in grouse meat – if I get a response I’ll share it with you. About as much chance as us achieving VL in England?

    Keep up the brilliant work, we should ask the royal mint to issue a commemorative coin when the magic 100K is reached?

  3. I for one am very pleased with this decision. We have a new M@S Simply Food due to open in our town, I shall now (until their decision is reversed) cross the threshold.

  4. If anyone has more than one email address use them all that is if you are against the shooting of birds of prey

    1. Please nobody use multiple email addresses to try and spoof the petition, it undermines its legitimacy as a form of protest. Plus they can cross-reference against IP addresses and the electoral roll as you have to give your name and street address.

      1. Well said. Any lies or inaccuracy will be jumped on to undermine all the good work that RPUK and others have done.

        Just look how the lies and obfuscation are undermining the shooting lobby’s case.
        We don’t need to. Our strength is the truth.

  5. Et tu Brute? M&S and press finally jumping ship and switching sides. closing in on 100,000! two fingers back to the organised criminal gangs infesting our uplands, your time is closing in

  6. M&S have only capitulated because of pressure, the BBC are still favouring the advocates of land management for grouse in favour of the few at the cost of the many. We’ve caused them to report it otherwise they’d risk egg on their faces?

    Conservation must stay true to honesty, integrity, accuracy and above all robust science. They self defeat with their crass and toxic twaddle? It seems to me that they have helped push the signatories by their erroneous dribble – maybe eaten too much toxic lead in their game?

    But to re-iterate congratulations to Avery, Packham, Oddie, RPUK, Green Party, BAWC, LACS and all involved in getting the petition to 97,365 as I compose my last comment for the evening.

    I sense it will go through the magic figure around midnight or early morning and I sense some knew that, here’s to the continuing momentum (we have until 20 September) and to more significantly, to the next chapter in the challenge of change.

    The ‘phlebs’ have taken back the ‘glorious ‘inglorious 12th’?

  7. Dorothy we got where we are with integrity, we do not need to lie & deceive. Lies & deceit have been the policy of those promoting the poisoning, trapping & shooting of birds of prey, the mass slaughter of innocent mountain hares & the exacerbated flooding of human communities. All their arguments (lies) have become unravelled, hence that is why the public are flocking to support us. Dorothy I can understand your passion to end these truly evil practices which are so widespread in our uplands, it disgusts me no end too, but we most not stoop to their dirty thuggish level.

    1. ‘Sir’ was rumbled (one of many) when he invented a ‘Report’ by the BTO in his recent interview, the BTO subsequently issued a press release.

      T’other ‘Sir’ Nicholas Soames retweeted offensive diction, they may have the titles but not the etiquette and certainly not the evidence.

      …. then they fight, so we are in the next phase where we win. It will be hard but they started it, and by ducking the illegality of their actions simply by saying there have been no prosecutions simply spurs us on.

      Once more to the breach dear friends, but in the interim enjoy the sweet taste of cowards on the back foot?

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