Voluntary Sector: Taking Action ... WSPA vs The UK Dairy Industry

Protesters: World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA)
Target: The UK dairy industry
Location: Westminster, London
Date: 1 September

The lowdown

More than 100 animal welfare supporters dressed in orange prison jump suits and pantomime cow heads congregated outside Defra's London HQ in a stunt organised by the WSPA.

- Why the protest?

The stunt marked the WSPA's launch of a national campaign to fight attempts to intensify the UK's dairy industry. This follows a plan by Nocton Dairies to open an 8,100-herd 'mega-dairy' in the village of Nocton, Lincolnshire. WSPA UK wants the dairy industry and supermarkets to involve the British public when making decisions on how milk is produced and purchased.

- How did Nocton Dairies respond?

Nocton Dairies director Peter Willes told Farmers Guardian: 'We totally oppose cruelty to cows or any animals. But as we are yet to issue any detailed welfare and management information explaining how the cows would eat, drink, rest, exercise and live, some tenuous assumptions appear to be being made based solely on cow numbers.'

- How did the media cover it?

The story was picked up by PA, along with farmers' trades Farmers Guardian, Farmers Weekly and Farming Today. Major portals such as AOL and MSN picked up the story, as did regional news programme Calendar, BBC regional news shows and local Lincolnshire bloggers.

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