Animal Rebellion campaigners targeted Waitrose Morning page Saturday (October 15), where you take milk from the shelves and pour it away. As she emptied a bottle of half-foam, one protester said the dairy industry is “responsible for more greenhouse gas emissions than oil giants”.
She said: “The top four dairy companies are responsible for the majority of methane emissions. Milk is not fit for human consumption. When baby calves are taken from their mothers, when mothers are forcibly impregnated…”
When a member of staff tried to intervene, the woman said it was a non-violent protest. Another protester said: “We’ve tried other democratic means, they don’t work.”
The video of the incident was uploaded Twitter where it has more than six million views. Reacting to the stunt, Edinburgh labor councillor Scott Arthur wrote: “There’s a serious debate to be had about the environmental impact of the food we eat, but it’s not. Well done to the staff who stayed behind to clean up this mess.”
It comes as part of Animal Rebellion co-ordinated action up and down the UK, targeting stores such as Waitrose, Whole Foods and Marks and Spencer in London, Manchester, Norwich and Edinburgh around lunchtime on Saturday.
Footage shows several protesters pouring milk taken from the shelves onto display cabinets in Harrods’ food hall in Knightsbridge. Another group was filmed emptying milk bottles onto the floor and over a table full of cheeses in Fortnum and Mason in Piccadilly.
Animal Rebellion said it calls for a plant-based future and highlights the need to support farmers in the transition to a sustainable plant-based food system.
Lou Hadden, a charity worker from Herefordshire who joined the action in Fortnum and Mason, said: “This is not how I imagined spending my weekend. Unfortunately this disruption is necessary to get the powers that be to listen to Oxford academics , Harvard.and IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change).
“The world’s best climate and land scientists are calling for the transition to a plant-based food system. We need bold and decisive politics at this time, not the horror show we are currently seeing.”
Skylar Sharples, an international development graduate from Bristol and one of the protesters at Harrods, said: “Supporters of Animal Rebellion are acting back because Liz Truss and Ranil Jayawardena [Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs] again deciding to ignore calls to start building a better future.
“A plant-based future would see a beautiful world for all of us who thrive on nature and life. The steps to properly support farmers in this transition must begin now.”
Additional reporting from PA.