Game for Meat

Friday, January 08, 2010

Game meats are moving from the hunter's freezer to urban restaurants. Anthony Licata, editor-in-chief of Field and Stream, and John Besh, celebrity chef and owner of Restaurant August in New Orleans, explain why and how deer and other wild animals are finding their way onto more menus.


Anthony Licata and John Besh

Comments [32]

Jon P. from The Garden State

Laurie Spiegel from Tribeca

By the way, I don’t hunt myself but I’m all for reintroducing natural predators like wolves (no matter how much cattle they kill) to keep things in check as it should be. But people want to let their domesticated animals and kids run free in the backyard.

Jan. 08 2010 01:02 PM
Jon P. from The Garden State

Laurie Spiegel from Tribeca

Have you ever seen a dead deer in the middle of the woods that obviously died of disease? Probably not to many of those in Tribeca. How quickly we forget when removed from the wild that Mother Nature at times can be far more cruel and torturous then you or I could ever imagine. Would you rather be painfully mauled to death and be eaten alive by a mountain lion or shot by a hunter? I’ll take my chances with the hunter.

Jan. 08 2010 12:46 PM
Laurie Spiegel from Tribeca

Jon P - You certainly must know that is often happens that a hunter wounds an animal who then escapes into the woods to die that same kind of long slow painful death from their human-inflicted injury.

There are TNR (Trap Neuter and Release) programs in other states that spay and release deer or use other forms of populations control that don't risk that kind of death that results from not everyone being either conscientious or a good shot.

Jan. 08 2010 12:35 PM
Laurie Spiegel from Tribeca

Jon P. from The Garden State I was not objecting to the the word "hunting" for the tracking of wild animals but to the use of the word "harvesting" (rather than "killing" or "slaughter") for the killing of captive animals.

Nonetheless Cynthia is right. You are not just hunting but also killing. The word "hunting" avoids truth a bit too. "Hunting" is something I often do with my camera because I love photographing animals. Killing is what you are talking about - taking a life.

I have not said anything judgemental here. I am simply asking for honest accurate non-evasive non-manipulative use of language. That is a prerequisite for meaningful discussion.

Jan. 08 2010 12:24 PM
Jon P. from The Garden State

deer from somerset,

As a deer in NJ, you should already know that you have not a single natural predator left to keep you in check. Sure there are lots of black bears but there are a lot easier things for them to catch and forage for. So now you’re diseased and starving in areas of mass overpopulation. Let’s face it, your only realistic predator are cars and trucks. Want to talk about a sad way to go. Get hit by a car and live to run off in the woods and die a very slow and painful death. I’ve seen it happen more then once.

Jan. 08 2010 12:23 PM
Suki from Williamsburg

If you are eating venison in a restaurant, most likely it is coming from a "deer farm" in NEW ZEALAND! Not New Jersey...

Jan. 08 2010 12:22 PM
Ron from Scotch Plains

I'll be goose hunting tomorrow. To do so i need: A resident firearm hunting license, state waterfowl stamp, Federsal waterfowl stamp, HIP survey number.
Resident license funds the purchase and preservation of Wildlife Management Areas in State.
State stamp funds the purchase and preservation of wetlands in state.
Federal stamp funds the purchase and preservation of wetlands in nation
HIP number survey provides statisitics to state regarding how much of migrating species are killed in a season.

If you don't hunt what do you do to fund the preservation of habitat in NJ and the nation?

Also hunting is different than killing because frankly, more often than not when i go hunting i don't kill anything!

Jan. 08 2010 12:20 PM
Ron from Scotch Plains

If you are eating venison in a restaurant most likely it's comoing form a deer farm anyway.

To get real "wild" game your going to have to do it yourself or have some hunter friends give you some.

Jan. 08 2010 12:09 PM
Ron from Scotch Plains

Julia from Skillman...Property owners don't even have to post their land. If hunters are on there without your permission you have every right to kick them off.
If the hunters are on public or private land where they have permission there is nothing you can do unless they are within 450 ft of your home.

Jan. 08 2010 12:08 PM
Cynthia from long island

Um Jon, one goes hunting (as in searching for something) but once you catch an animal and end that creature's life then it's killing.

Jan. 08 2010 12:07 PM
josephine from brooklyn

re: "what could be noble than..."
for noting that perhaps it is more noble to not kill at all. I had that exact though as you said it.

Jan. 08 2010 12:05 PM
deer from somerset county nj

rich -- actually what we have an overpopulation of in new jersey is people.

they get points for those lawns but we find their pathways rather intrusive.

Jan. 08 2010 12:04 PM
Jay F. from manhattan

Why is are some callers prefacing their comments by saying, "I'm a registered democrat but..." What does that have to do with hunting game?

Jan. 08 2010 12:04 PM
Cynthia from long island

Brian Lehrer, you enjoy riling veg.s! I'm on to you Man!

Jan. 08 2010 12:02 PM
Jon P. from The Garden State

Laurie Spiegel from Tribeca,

as for your linguistic manipulation, its called hunting, not killing when hunting in the wild. You kill a dear with your car. You hunt with a bow or hunting rifle or shotgun. Fact: hunters are some of the biggest supporters of wildlife reserves through their hunting licensing fees.

If your against factory farming, hunters should be your best friend.

Jan. 08 2010 12:02 PM
Cynthia from long island

That's an annoying argument. Most vegetarians aren't vegetarians because they don't where the meat is coming from geographically. Most vegetarians opt for the diet out of respect for his/her own health and for the life of animal.

Jan. 08 2010 12:01 PM
Matt from Manhattan

I went to my home state WV over the holidays and went hunting with hunter friend for the first time. After 11 hours out in the cold seeing almost no deer, I saw and shot one just before the sun went down. Perfect shot. It was thrilling, and most satisfying to bring home a cooler full of venison that will reduce my participation in the horrors of industrial meat production in this country.

Jan. 08 2010 12:00 PM
Tamara from astoria

I am very fortunate to know "John the Hunter"; sound man by day, bow hunter in his free time. He hunts deer with a bow and arrow in NJ, has his butcher process it, and brings some of it to me. I cook daily, for myself and frquently for others, and conisder this the ultimate recycling behavior. The animal that is overpopulated is killed humanely, the butcher is given business, and I am given delicious meat. Everyone wins!

Jan. 08 2010 11:59 AM
Luc from NYC

Isn't "Locavoreism" really about sustainability or environmental benefit? If most of the restaurant game is harvested in a way that may compete with farmland, and then transported from out west how is this fundamentally any more environmentally friendly than normal cattle ranching. I understand that if you are living in the area where it is being hunted and eaten but what is being described sounds like cities sucking the natural resources of more rural areas in exchange for cash. Note that I am talking about the ranch model.

Jan. 08 2010 11:58 AM

lived in a 3rd world (tho clean) country for some yrs where local restaurants served pigeons caught in the local city park.

wasn't delicious.

Jan. 08 2010 11:58 AM
rich from blairstown, new jersey

We have an over-population of deer in New Jersey, plently of venison for all! A few weeks ago I hit a deer; fortunately it was a small one so there was no damage to the car. But the deer was crippled and I had to call 911 so the deer can be euthanized by the State Police: I wouldn't be surprised if he took it home for himself.

Jan. 08 2010 11:56 AM
Julia from Skillman, NJ

What is annoying are the hunters who make themselves at home, come on my property with their weapons, make themselves comfortable in my trees, are unable to read the "No Hunting & Trespassing" signs all over the place and the local police (I am certain buddies of the hunters) say that there is nothing they can do because they are not shooting within 450 feet from my house.

I find this group to be excessively arrogant with their behavior-but, in Montgomery, NJ, they are allowed to disrespectful to people and their property.

Jan. 08 2010 11:56 AM
CJ from NY

Laurie has a point.

Jan. 08 2010 11:56 AM

I saw 2 dead deer strapped to the top of a pick-up truck a month or so ago just around the corner from me in Astoria. Maybe this will be a more common site?

Jan. 08 2010 11:55 AM
Suki from Williamsburg

My husband is a life-long hunter from the south and actually loves that his friends ask him to take them hunting now, rather than constantly whining about killing Bambi!

My husband is the reason that many of our friends are no longer vegetarians! Knowing where their meat comes from (my husband) is reassuring.

Jan. 08 2010 11:55 AM
CJ from NY

I'm queasy. Just because it is local doesn't make it a healthy diet option.

Jan. 08 2010 11:55 AM

stray cats, anyone?

Jan. 08 2010 11:55 AM
Ron from Scotch Plains

I grew up hunting in NJ and still do it every year. In fact, I'm going goose hunting tomorrow.
I also love WNYC and am a registered Democrat who is still excited by President Obama!

Jan. 08 2010 11:53 AM
Laurie Spiegel from Tribeca

Please stop with the linguistic manipulation! You should call out your guest on this kind of thing just the same as you point out the manipulation in "death tax" versus "estate tax".

Animals are not "harvested" (as your guest puts it). Animals are not a crop. They are conscious living beings. They have brains and nervous systems. Animals are "killed" and that is the word your guest should use.

Jan. 08 2010 11:53 AM
Jon P. from The Garden State

Sorry but hunting anything on a farm, no matter what kind of farm is not hunting no matter how you cut it. Call it what it is, slaughtering farm animals. Is this going to be a new favorite hipster sport like farming or knitting?

Jan. 08 2010 11:53 AM
Limo Lib from Upper East Side (Hamptons in Summer)

You mean were closer to those Neanderthals in the "fly-over" states than we think?! Gasp!

How will I maintain my hip, snobby, snotty NYC attitude and condescension toward the unwashed masses?

Jan. 08 2010 11:52 AM

I'm eating moose chili as you speak. Bagged by my hunter friend in VT in October. He also hunts on my property for deer. So I just laugh at them when they eat my plants: Ha! You can eat my plants, but I can eat you.

Jan. 08 2010 11:49 AM

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