21st January 2004; immediate use
NATIONWIDE PROTESTS AGAINST TESCO ANIMAL CRUELTY
Over 150 stores targeted in protests over 'horror' pig investigation
Protests will take place outside more than 150 Tesco stores on Saturday, January 24,
to highlight the suffering of pigs on a farm belonging to one of Tesco's main suppliers.
An undercover investigation by the national animal group Viva! revealed dead piglets lying
in pens with their siblings and mothers; wounds and infections, including a deep necrotic ulcer;
emaciated and dying piglets; and maggots crawling over a piglet's corpse.
The investigation into Cherry Tree Farm, belonging to the multimillion-pound meat supplier,
Bowes' of Norfolk, received national publicity last October. Tesco admits that Bowes has
supplied it with pig meat for 17 years but denies that it has serious welfare problems and has
praised its 'high standards'.
Viva! campaigner, Alistair Currie, says: "I believe people will be horrified to learn that
Tesco is deeply involved in factory farming, with all its attendant cruelty. Our investigation
has shown that behind the slick TV adverts and shiny packaging, even the biggest name in food
retailing profits from suffering. We uncovered some disturbing scenes but Tesco refuses to
condemn or change its supplier. The reason, of course, is that the images we showed are not
unique but part and parcel of modern factory farming, which now provides almost all pig meat.
We want as many of Tesco's customers as possible to know the reality so they can make informed
choices and shame the company into action."
Protests are taking place at stores from Cornwall to Inverness. Viva! supporters will be
distributing leaflets to customers and carrying posters displaying images from the investigation.
In response to the day of action, Tesco requested a meeting with Viva! last week but were
unable to offer any assurances of improved animal welfare.
Contact: Alistair Currie on 0117 944 1000
Video and still images from the investigation are available in most formats.