Yukon game farm meats to go retail

Changes to the Yukon’s game farm regulations will allow the public to buy territorially-inspected game meats from Yukon retailers and restaurants.

“With this change, Yukon-grown products will be made available locally and will create better access to markets,” territory Environment Minister Elaine Taylor said in a release Thursday.

Up until now, the Yukon’s game farming industry has had to rely mainly on farm-gate sales, the government said. But the new rule will allow game farmers to sell to Yukon retailers and other businesses, provided they acquire an annual permit.

The Yukon’s Wildlife Act allows only individuals with a permit to sell game meat.

“The new rule will make it possible for retailers to offer local bison and elk meat, sausages and other products to consumers who wish to make healthy and environmentally-conscious choices,” the government said in its release.

“This is a change we’ve been looking forward to and I expect we’ll see some growth in the industry,” said Wayne Grove of the Game Growers’ Association, also in the territory’s release.

“This regulatory change will assist the growth of the agriculture industry by allowing elk and bison farmers to access mainstream markets and sell their Yukon-grown products to restaurants and grocery stores,” Resources Minister Brad Cathers agreed in the release.

The Yukon Fish and Wildlife Management Board had previously consulted with the public about the proposed regulatory change, finding “general support” for it, the government said.

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