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Dairy farmers deserve protection from animal rights activists, says Michael Gove

Defra Secretary Michael Gove has said dairy farmers deserve greater protection from animal rights activists who ‘undermine their work’.

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Dairy farmers deserve protection from animal rights activists, says Michael Gove #TeamDairy

Defra Secretary Michael Gove has said dairy farmers deserve greater protection from animal rights activists who ‘undermine their work’.

 

Mr Gove spoke out on the issue at NFU conference in Birmingham today (February 19).

 

His comments come just weeks after vegan group ‘Project Calf’ published a map of UK dairy farms, encouraging campaigners to use public footpaths to get footage of cows and separation pens.

 

Other farmers taking part in the Welsh badger cull have recently had their addresses published by a different animal rights group, and a butcher in Kent has received threats his shop will be petrol bombed.

 

Mr Gove said: “While I welcome, as we all should, a more demanding approach from consumers, we should not shirk, and I will not shy, from defending every sector of British farming.


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“Dairy farmers deserve protection from activists who undermine their work. Our dairy farmers, alongside sheep and beef farmers, play a critical role in keeping pastures and other vital landscapes resilient and they strengthen rural economies and rural society.”

 

Asked by Farmers Guardian what the Government would be doing to ensure farmers received the protection they need in future, Mr Gove said: “My message is simple.

 

“People who are running legitimate businesses, producing high-quality products we cherish, should be protected and there should be a responsibility on the police and everyone else to ensure we do not have the sort of activism that undermines the work of dairy farmers.

 

“I am all in favour of people who are about the environment having an opportunity to express their views clearly, but I am absolutely opposed to people who are running proper businesses being stopped from running those businesses and being in fear as a result.”

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