Exciting times for New Zealand venison making it in the United States. In September, Andy Keating (of Wakaepa farm) and Hamish and Anna Orbell (of Clayton Station) are embarking on a sales tour of the USA with a key distributor, D’Artagnan. This is the time of year when the chefs are considering their fall menus, so the NZ team are primed to meet with potential new accounts and represent Mountain River Cervena on the world stage. They will travel with sales reps in New York, Chicago, Houston and Washington DC. It’s a very busy tour - the farmers will visit 6-8 accounts per day for 9 days. The target is 90 accounts in total! They will have 30-40 minutes per visit to make their pitch! The tour is a great way for the farmers to educate the market about Cervena venison. In the meetings, the chefs and sales reps see and hear first hand where Cervena venison comes from, via a presentation and portfolio of photos of their farming operation. The farmers also learn first hand what it takes to convince a chef their venison is worthy of a place on their menu. The best selling point? The farmers take a rack cutlet to each meeting for the chefs to cook and taste! The chefs are interested in the connection to the land, how Cervena venison is produced, what the deer eat and all the other parts of producing top quality venison in NZ. Therefore it’s fitting that the key part of the D’Artagnan philosophy is to link the farmer and the customer. “We believe food raised right tastes better. Before such buzzwords existed, and for more than 30 years, D’Artagnan has been committed to free-range, natural and sustainable, humane farming practices.” It is this philosophy that will surely stand the farmers and D’Artagnan in good stead with the chefs and result in good progress in sharing New Zealand venison with the world.