Denis Lynn, the founder of Finnebrogue, bought the estate in 1991 and initially ran it as a beef farm. However after spotting an opportunity to offer a different, healthier meat to consumers, in 1996 Denis decided to convert the estate to deer production.
"I've always liked deer and that certainly swayed our decision to go down this route," he explains. "But when we spoke to people we heard of nothing but inconsistent, gamey and poor quality wild venison being sold, and we were confident that we could offer a better product." To deliver this Denis set out to ensure that the welfare of his deer was as good as possible. "Our approach centres around our belief that animals should have the best life possible and be treated with care and respect," he continues. "Everything we do on the farm is about minimising stress for the animals."
A key part of this includes managing the natural features around the estate and this is something that Denis is very proactive about. "We have a significant tree planting programme in place and have added more than 4,200 native broadleaved trees to the estate so far. We have also got a graduate looking at biodiversity around the estate and we manage habitats carefully to ensure that ecosystems remain in balance."
This, along with a real focus on animal welfare, ensures that the deer at Finnebrogue live a comfortable life and produce the best quality vension. "We’ll never compromise on animal welfare or product quality and we are always looking for better ways to do things," Denis concludes. "That is why M&S venison is so good – always succulent and tender with a great depth of flavour.”
Did you know?
We only sell high welfare farmed venison (rather than wild venison) to ensure that he meat is always tender and succulent
- Venison is usually low in fat and a source of iron and zinc