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As with other grass-fed meats, such as beef and lamb, the highest-quality farm-raised venison comes from New Zealand. The country’s abundant grasslands and temperate climate allow ruminant animals to be raised on pastures and venison farms, eating nutrient-dense live grasses all year round.


Quality Venison From New Zealand

“Good grass is essential,” says Mark Tapley of Peel Forest Estate. He raises some of the finest red deer in New Zealand, if not the world, for Silver Fern Farms. As owner Graham Carr’s stepson, Tapley grew up from the age of five on the iconic estate near Mount Peel on New Zealand’s South Island, one of the purest natural landscapes anywhere on earth. Their animals graze on a veritable banquet of fresh grasses. “We renew our pastures all the time. The paddocks are always getting the best quality grass.”

"Good grass is essential"

Raising Deer For Silver Fern Farms Venison

Raising deer is a bit different from farming other livestock. They are not as docile or domesticated as steer. They are smart, wily and need room to run. That makes them well suited to the rolling hills on the southernmost coast of South Island, where Chris and Robynne O’Connell raise deer for Silver Fern Farms. “We try to farm so our animals are healthy, happy and stress-free. It makes for better meat.”


Since deer farming began there in the 1960s, New Zealand has developed the world’s most advanced deer-farming industry and is the top exporter of farm-raised venison in the world.


New Zealand Venison Farmers

  • Lead the world in animal welfare.
  • Work with their land, not against it.
  • Pursue innovation.
  • Respect tradition.
  • Love what they do.

About Farmed Venison


Whether wild or farmed, all venison is considered game meat, but the difference in taste is significant. Hunted venison often tastes strong or gamey. It can’t be sold commercially in the U.S, so if you’ve eaten venison in a restaurant, it was likely farmed venison meat. Farmed venison has a delicate, slightly sweet flavor & tremendous tenderness. As with most game meat, venison is a lean meat. It’s lower in fat, cholesterol, and calories than beef, with more iron than both beef and lamb. Farm-raised venison is also a good source of zinc as well as many B vitamins.





About Silver Fern Farms


For more than a decade we have built a relationship working with Silver Fern Farms, importing & marketing their grass-fed, pastured-raised beef in the U.S. Their values mirror our own principles and standards for sourcing meat, and their pursuit of environmental sustainability sets them apart from other suppliers.


Producing grass-fed, pasture-raised meat, free of sub-therapeutic antibiotics and growth hormones, using sustainable and humane methods, is more than a corporate initiative, it’s a way of life for Silver Fern farmers.