RSPCA calls for milk boycott as farmers prepare for badger cull

Landowners 'should be made to feel financial consequences of letting animals be shot'

A A A

The RSPCA has called for a boycott of dairy products from parts of the West Country where badgers will be culled, saying that farmers and landowners should be made to feel the "commercial consequences" of allowing badgers to be shot on their land.

Launching a campaign against the badger cull alongside a coalition of animal welfare groups, Gavin Grant, the chief executive of the RSPCA, also said tourists should make the areas a no-go zone. "Those who care will not want to visit areas or buy milk from farms soaked in badgers' blood," he said. "Dairy consumers should be saying: I will not buy milk from areas where they are culling. Landowners and farmers allowing this to happen on their land have to realise there will be commercial consequences."

The first trial cull licence was granted to a consortium in Gloucestershire earlier this week. A second licence, to shoot badgers in areas of Somerset, is likely to be granted in the coming days. The first night shoots could take place in a matter of weeks.

An alliance of 18 of the UK's leading animal welfare groups yesterday launched a last-ditch campaign to stop the trial cull. They aim to attract 100,000 signatures to a parliamentary petition on the matter. Campaigners are also taking their case to Europe, arguing that the cull breaks the Bern Convention which protects EU wildlife.

Brian May, the Queen guitarist and head of the group Save Me, who is spearheading the campaign, said he would not drink milk from "the moment that the first badger is shot" in protest.

The cull is aimed at stopping the spread of bovine TB, which can be carried by badgers. Dairy farmers have been the hardest hit by the disease and many have backed the cull. Tesco and Morrisons said yesterday that they would continue to stock milk from regions affected by the cull. Waitrose, Marks & Spencer and the Co-op confirmed that they do not stock milk supplied from the area.

Mr Grant said farmers and members of the rural community opposed to the cull should act as "citizens of conscience" and oppose it "by all legal means". Joe Duckworth, chief executive of the League Against Cruel Sports, said the trial cull posed an immediate threat to 6,000 badgers and warned that people could also be hurt.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Sport
Ojo Onaolapo celebrates winning the bronze medal
commonwealth games
Arts and Entertainment
Rock band Led Zeppelin in the early 1970s
musicLed Zeppelin to release alternative Stairway To Heaven after 43 years
News
i100
News
Prince Harry is clearing enjoying the Commonwealth Games judging by this photo
people(a real one this time)
Extras
indybest
News
Richard Norris in GQ
mediaGQ features photo shoot with man who underwent full face transplant
Sport
Lionel Messi looks on at the end of the final
football
News
Gardai wait for the naked man, who had gone for a skinny dip in Belfast Lough
newsTwo skinny dippers threatened with inclusion on sex offenders’ register as naturists criminalised
News
Your picture is everything in the shallow world of online dating
i100
News
The Swiss Re tower or 'Gherkin' was at one time the UK’s most expensive office when German bank IVG and private equity firm Evans Randall bought it
news
Life and Style
Attractive women on the Internet: not a myth
techOkCupid boasts about Facebook-style experiments on users
Sport
Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
football
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Reconciliation Analyst

£200 - £250 per day: Orgtel: Reconciliation Analyst Gloucestershire

Soutions Architect TOGAF - Reading

£60000 - £80000 per annum + Excellent Corporate Benefits: Progressive Recruitm...

CAD Design Engineer

£30000 - £40000 per annum: Progressive Recruitment: CAD Design Do you have a...

Accounts Receivable / Accounts Payable Assistant - Central Lond

£27000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Accounts Receivable / Accounts Payab...

Day In a Page

The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them altogether

Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them

Jonathon Porritt sounds the alarm
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on