In February 2020 we were one of the signatories of a proposal for shooters to voluntarily change from lead ammunition to alternatives with a five-year time frame. This was a reasonable and achievable timeline. However we do not support further regulatory constraint.
The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation are aware of the UK REACH restriction dossier published today, and will be taking our time to scrutinise the contents before commenting further on the specific findings.
In February 2020 we were one of the signatories of a proposal for shooters to voluntarily change from lead ammunition to alternatives with a five-year time frame. This was a reasonable and achievable timeline in which to transition, and the shooting sector have made significant strides towards this. This is despite the COVID-19 pandemic affecting supplies of all components needed to make the transition away from lead. We are a little over two years into that voluntary transition.
We believe that game meat is a healthy option that should be more widely available, and by using alternatives to lead ammunition in shotgun cartridges there will be greater scope to increase the sale of game meat to a broader audience.
However we do not support further regulatory constraint. Given the fact that the UK shooting sector is already working towards a voluntary reduction in the amount of lead ammunition used with the aim of reducing to zero for meat producing animals, we do not believe that regulation is necessary.
The priority is to ensure sufficient supplies of non-lead ammunition; however there should be no underestimation of the seriousness of issues affecting global supply chains in the aftermath of the pandemic. We would encourage UK REACH to work with manufacturers and assemblers to plan a route map for the remainder of the transition period, to aid the research and development into alternatives to lead shot, and to ensure that adequate supplies of sustainable ammunition are made available.