Dick

Dick Playfair graduated with an honours degree in History and History of Art from Cambridge University. He joined the graduate marketing training programme of the Whitbread Group. After leaving Whitbread he worked with a number of UK consultancies and advertising agencies at director level before setting up Playfair Walker.

We should be eating more venison – a healthy, ‘home-grown’ natural resource

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Covid and its restrictions have knocked the stuffing out of a significant part of the venison market as with all businesses supplying restaurants and hotels, hospitality and events, food service and catering.  Shut down with the first national lockdown, a very short period of respite, and then shut down again, a proportion of UK venison sales have hit the buffers – from fine dining, to huge events serving 400 fillets in one sitting.

Retail remains consistent. Kantar reported venison performing well through UK retail/grocery up to February last year (UK venison sales volume +20%, value +12%) and continuing to do so.  Data to September 2020 showed more progress (sales +10%, value +7%) and the Christmas retail figures will probably show a further hike.

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GDPR shucks!

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Never (never, never, never, never, never!) has there been so much piffle, drivel, waffle, kerfuffle as there has been over the last few weeks/days/hours about GDPR.

Never (never, never, never, never, never!) have my in-box and my spam bin been so full of communication from people, companies, businesses, suppliers, contractors, contacts ad infinitum who I don’t know, have never spoken to, have never heard of, have never signed up to receive information from, but who are now sad to see me go. And why? They want my permission to keep my details on their databases and to keep sending me their stuff which I don’t read anyway.

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Is hot air and waffle recyclable and if so can it run a turbine?

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Our clients Saffery Champness and Smiths Gore are proud to be sponsors of the Oxford Union Debate at the annual Oxford Farming Conference. The Debate, which takes place in the famous Oxford Union where many politicians have cut their teeth, often provides some well-deserved light relief after a tough day of formal presentations at the Conference itself.

In keeping with that, Farmers Weekly awards a bottle of Champagne (or two) to the most iconoclastic contributions from the floor. This year was no exception in terms of the quality of debate, or that of offerings from the benches.

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Oxford Union Debate votes big is best

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As ever the Oxford Union Debate at the Oxford Farming Conference was going to merit a full house and, from the moment that Amelia Hamer, Somerville College, President of the Oxford Union, was ushered into the Chamber by her two bow-tied, tail-coated acolytes, a sense of drama was on the cards. Dick Playfair was there…

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Verbally abused

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We’ve become lazy with language. Cliché and jargon have crept into every aspect of life – and business as much as anywhere. It’s not often I have a rant and go off on one, but I’m going to go off on one now.

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Blackburied Alive!

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I took some persuading to get one. You would think for someone in PR that the gadget that enabled you to keep in touch by phone, text and e-mail at all times would be a must.

Not so for me, until now. I think that there are times when it’s good not to be in contact (like driving and eating a banana, or when receiving serve, or at the vet, or just before the trumpet solo in A String of Pearls … or at a meeting with a client), and when it’s good to talk (as they say) rather than e-mail.

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